Private Medical Insurance is used by people to supplement the service they receive from the NHS. The advantages of private medical insurance are that users can receive treatment without a lengthy wait, treatments that may not be available on the NHS can be offered and private hospitals tend to have more and potentially better equipped facilities.
Private medical insurance can be bought by individuals, families, or group cover may be provided by an employer. There are different types of cover available depending on how extensive you want your cover to be and what your budget is. Even the most extensive policy will not cover every medical procedure and common exclusions are emergency admissions, normal pregnancy, pre-existing conditions and cosmetic surgery.
Quotes for private medical insurance are usually provided on one of two bases, full medical history or moratorium. Under a full medical history cover, the insurer is given your complete medical history. Pre-existing conditions will be excluded and you will be given a full list of what the policy covers. With a moratorium policy you do not have to give a full medical history, but you won't be covered for any medical condition you have had in a certain time period prior to the policy starting. If you remain free of the condition for a set time, then you may be covered for it in the future.
Experts in Money can introduce you to a specialist Adviser – who can help you make sense of the many options for a quotation. It is important to ensure you have the right cover for your circumstances and budget.
The Adviser will look at many available facilities and help you choose accordingly. Things that they consider may include:
A lower cost alternative to medical insurance is the health cash plan. These plans pay cash sums towards a range of treatments such as dental care, optical care and stays in hospital. Health cash plans sometimes also include critical illness insurance or accidental death benefits. Many health cash plans include cover for alternative therapies such as acupuncture or homoeopathy. A health cash plan will not require a medical before someone joins it and premiums do not normally increase with age or gender. Almost all cash plans have a waiting time of between three and six months before you can make your first claim.