How Can I Reduce My Private Health Insurance Premiums?

I want to understand the ways in which I can reduce my monthly premiums on my Private Medical Insurance plan. The only one I have thought of is adding an excess to the policy.

Question asked by Samantha Atkins

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Private Health Insurance can be expensive, but many insurers offer a variety of ways to help you reduce the costs. We asked Drewberry’s Independent Protection Expert, Alex Weir, how best to do this. Just press play! 👇

Ways Of Reducing Health Insurance Costs

Adding excess is one common way that you can lower the cost of your Health Insurance. However, you do have other options too. We’ve outlined these below.

Level Of Outpatient Cover

When it comes to Private Health Insurance, cover is primarily made up of two types of cover. Inpatient and Outpatient cover.

  • Inpatient Cover
    The majority of policies cover Inpatient Treatment in full. This is any treatment you need where a stay in hospital is needed.
  • Outpatient Cover
    Includes any treatment that doesn’t involve using a hospital bed. For example scans, tests or specialist consultations. With this particular type of cover, providers will give you the option of different levels. For example you could opt for no cover, £500, £1000, £1500 or unlimited Outpatient cover. The lower the amount the cheaper your cover will be.

Additional Benefits

Many policies will also offer additional benefits. By opting not to include these options you can help to reduce your premiums.

  • Therapies
    Often an additional option which can be selected which covers treatments such as osteopathy and chiropody. Given the nature of these treatments claims can be quite common and including such cover can increase your premium by as much as 10%.
  • Psychiatric Cover
    Another additional option which can often be included. However, the cost of treatment can be expensive and drawn out and thus can add another 5-10% to your monthly premiums.

6 Week Wait Option

The 6 week wait option was introduced into the PMI market to provide a more affordable option to individuals who were priced out of the market.

With the 6 week wait option you would agree to receive treatment via the NHS should the waiting list for treatment be less than 6 weeks.

If it is more than 6 weeks, you would be eligible to receive treatment privately immediately. By opting for the 6 week wait option premiums can reduce by as much as a third.

The 6 week NHS wait only applies to inpatient care (i.e. all care requiring the use of a hospital bed), not outpatient care. If you’ve opted for outpatient care on your policy, this will allow you to be seen privately as soon as possible for all outpatient diagnostic tests / scans

Hospital Lists

Most insurers offer a standard hospital list which covers a wide range of hospitals throughout the UK.

However, there are then options to either extend or reduce that hospital list depending on your requirements.

Options to reduce the hospital list can often include a local hospital list limiting the hospitals in which treatment can be receive. Some insurers go as far as offering hospital lists which limit you to private wings of NHS hospitals. By choosing a limited list you can lower the cost of your premiums.

Need Help?

With any of the above options its vital to understand how they impact your policy and the treatment you would receive. Before altering your cover, we would always recommend speaking with an expert adviser.

Our friendly experts are on hand to help, so don’t hesitate to pop us a call on 02074425880 or email

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