Why have private health insurance in the UK?

Discover the many benefits of having a private health insurance policy in the UK.

In the UK, we are fortunate to have one of the world's best healthcare systems. However, there are instances where additional support becomes necessary, such as speeding up access to treatment. A private health insurance policy offers peace of mind, ensuring that if you or your family members fall ill, you will receive prompt access to remote GPs and specialists for diagnosis and, if needed, treatment.

What are the advantages of private health insurance?

Prompt access for diagnosis and treatment

Having private health insurance can help you avoid potentially long waiting lists, ensuring swift diagnosis and treatment.

Freedom to choose

Enjoy the freedom to choose your preferred healthcare providers, treatment locations, and appointment times that suit your needs.

Collaboration with the NHS

Health insurance policies can complement the services offered by the National Health Service (NHS), working in harmony to enhance your healthcare options.

Cover for vital medications

It can provide cover for potentially life-saving drugs that may not be readily available through the NHS.

Remote GP helpline

Have access to a dedicated GP helpline, available at a time that suits you, every day of the year, providing you with professional medical advice whenever you require it.

Peace of mind

Offers increased flexibility, comfort and privacy to give you peace of mind should you fall ill and need a diagnosis or treatment.

Please be aware that any cover chosen will be subject to underwriting and pre-existing conditions will not be covered.

Freedom to choose

While the UK boasts an exceptional healthcare system, there are occasions when you may require additional options. Whether it's avoiding waiting lists or accessing specialised cancer treatments that may not be readily available through the NHS, you deserve the freedom to make decisions that are best for your health. Unlike some health insurers who restrict your choices, WPA believe that you should be in control of your own healthcare journey.

That's why all our members enjoy the freedom to select where, when, and who provides them with treatment.

How do I compare private health insurance policies?

When it comes to choosing the right policy, making an informed decision is crucial. Each policy has its own features, benefits, and costs. To ensure you select the most suitable policy for your needs, consider the following factors when comparing:

1. Customer reviews and ratings

Research customer reviews and ratings for the insurance providers and their policies. Feedback from current or previous policyholders can offer valuable insights into the level of customer service, claims processing, and overall satisfaction with the policies. Consider both positive and negative reviews to gain a balanced perspective.

2. Cover and benefits

Compare the cover and benefits offered by each policy. Consider what medical services are included, such as in-patient, out-patient, specialist consultations, and preventive care. It is also important to understand the impact of your chosen underwriting method.

3. Network of providers

Review the network of healthcare providers associated with each policy. Check if your preferred hospitals, clinics, and specialists are included in the network. Being able to access healthcare providers conveniently can impact the quality and accessibility of your medical care.

4. Premiums and costs

Compare the premiums, deductibles, co-payments, and coinsurance for each policy. Premiums are the monthly fees you pay for the insurance cover, while deductibles are the amount you must pay out of pocket before the insurance starts covering costs - such as with an Excess or a Shared Responsibility. Consider your budget and healthcare needs to find a balance between affordability and the level of cover you require.

5. Additional services and benefits

Compare the additional services and benefits provided by each policy. This may include wellness programs, remote GP services, mental health support, or alternative therapies. Consider which additional services could enhance your healthcare experience.

By carefully comparing these factors, you can make a well-informed choice when selecting a private health insurance policy. Get guidance from insurance professionals if needed and prioritise finding a policy that provides the best balance between cost, cover, and convenience for your unique circumstances. It is worth remembering that private health insurance in the UK isn't designed to cover pre-existing conditions and would need to be treated on the NHS.

Need help with some of the words and phrases commonly used by health insurance companies?

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Waiting lists and how private health insurance can help

Waiting lists can be a challenge within the UK healthcare system. When you or your loved ones require prompt medical attention, waiting times can cause anxiety and delays in receiving treatment. That's where having a private health insurance policy in place before you become ill, can make a substantial difference, by offering a solution to gain access to the medical care you need - avoiding the frustration of waiting to see a specialist or having a procedure.

When a health concern arises, you can consult with remote GPs and specialists promptly, leading to faster evaluations, diagnoses, and appropriate treatment plans. This prompt access to healthcare services can significantly improve your overall wellbeing and can increase the chances of successful outcomes.

In addition, it provides you with the freedom to choose where and when you receive medical care. While the NHS offers excellent services, private healthcare options can offer greater flexibility in terms of appointment availability and choice of specialists and hospitals.

Common misconceptions about private health insurance

There are several misconceptions surrounding private health insurance, that can cloud people's understanding of its benefits.

Myth 1: Private health insurance is expensive and unaffordable

Contrary to popular belief, health insurance can be affordable and tailored to fit various budgets. With a wide range of insurance providers and plans available, you can find options that offer cover at a price that suits your financial circumstances.

Myth 2: Private health insurance covers only major medical treatment

Private health insurance goes beyond just covering major medical treatment. It can provide cover for a variety of healthcare services, including preventive care, visits to the dentist, diagnostic tests, and specialised treatments. It can provide protection for both major conditions, such as cancer, and routine healthcare needs - but will not cover pre-existing conditions that existed before you took out a policy.

Myth 3: Private health insurance is only for the middle aged or older people

Private health insurance is not limited to a specific age group or only those with or without pre-existing conditions. From young adults starting their careers to families seeking comprehensive cover, it offers valuable protection and peace of mind for everyone.

Myth 4: Private health insurance is unnecessary with a public healthcare system

We are lucky to have the NHS in the UK, but private health insurance can complement and enhance the services it provides. It offers benefits such as faster access to specialists, greater choice of healthcare providers, and cover for treatments not available through the NHS. It can also provide additional choice and flexibility to customise your healthcare options.

Myth 5: Private health insurance is complicated and difficult to understand

Understanding private health insurance can seem overwhelming, but it doesn't have to be. Insurance providers offer resources, tools, and customer support to help you navigate through the process and make informed decisions. With clear explanations and guidance, you can gain a better understanding of the cover options and choose a policy that meets your specific needs.

Private health insurance can be a valuable investment in your wellbeing. It offers peace of mind, timely access to healthcare services, and protection against unexpected medical expenses.

Self-pay vs insurance

Having the assurance that you can access private medical facilities at your convenience can be incredibly comforting. While self-payment is an option, it's worth considering the benefits of having a health insurance policy in place to cover the costs.

The advantages of health insurance mirror those of other types of insurance. Instead of needing a substantial sum of money at a specific time, an insurance policy allows you to pay for cover through affordable monthly premiums. Furthermore, you have the flexibility to tailor the benefits and Shared Responsibility or Excess, enabling you to control your monthly premiums. This means you can enjoy the benefits you need at a price that suits your budget.

Exploring additional services

Private health insurance providers often offer a range of additional services that go beyond basic medical cover. These services are designed to enhance your healthcare experience and provide comprehensive support. Let's explore some of the valuable additional services that may be available to you.

Remote GP Services

Remote GP Services can give you access to a GP helpline, usually available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. This valuable service allows you to receive advice, reassurance, medication or a referral when you need it at an agreed time and date.

Health & Wellbeing Resources

Private health insurance providers often offer a wealth of educational resources and tools to help you make informed healthcare decisions. These resources may include online portals, mobile apps, health risk assessments, and educational materials.

Alternative Therapies

Some plans extend cover to alternative therapies, such as acupuncture, chiropractic care, or homoeopathic medicine. These therapies can complement traditional medical treatments and provide additional options for managing certain health conditions.

Mental Health Support

Recognising the importance of mental health, many health insurance providers now include cover for mental health services. This may include access to therapists, counsellors, or psychologists who can help address various mental health concerns.

Exploring these additional services can help you make the most of your cover. Take the time to understand what services are available and how they can contribute to your overall wellbeing.

Health insurance from a company you can trust

We are an award-winning UK health insurer and are committed to providing the very best service to you.
Whether you are looking to switch providers, or wanting to get cover for the first time, find out how much you would pay.

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