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Should You Get Private Health Insurance in the UK?

In the United Kingdom, most residents are entitled to free healthcare from the National Health Service (NHS). However, many individuals opt to take out private medical insurance, which covers the costs of treatment by private healthcare providers. This guide aims to provide insights into how private health insurance works, when it might be suitable, its pros and cons, and factors to consider before making a decision.

What's Covered in This Guide?

  • What does private health insurance do?
  • What does it cover?
  • What isn't covered?
  • How to choose a private health insurance plan
  • Do you need private health insurance?
  • Pros and cons of private health insurance
  • Alternative options for private healthcare
  • Five things to consider when buying private health insurance
  • Other types of insurance to consider

What Does Private Health Insurance Do?

Private health insurance, also known as private medical insurance, covers some or all of your medical bills if you're treated privately. It provides flexibility in choosing the level of care, when and how it's provided. For those who prefer not to rely on the NHS, private health insurance offers an alternative route to healthcare, especially for serious conditions.

What Does It Cover?

Coverage under private medical insurance varies based on the policy and provider. Basic policies typically cover in-patient treatments, such as tests and surgery, along with day-care surgery. Some policies extend to out-patient treatments, specialists, and consultants, with additional benefits like a fixed amount for each night spent in an NHS hospital.

What Isn't Covered?

Private health insurance usually doesn't cover certain treatments, including organ transplants, pre-existing medical conditions, normal pregnancy and childbirth costs, cosmetic surgery, injuries from dangerous sports or war, and chronic illnesses like HIV/AIDS-related illnesses and diabetes.

How Do I Choose a Private Health Insurance Plan?

Private medical insurance may be offered through employer benefit plans or purchased individually from insurers, brokers, financial advisers, banks, or retailers. It's essential to compare policies, considering coverage, premiums, and provider networks, to find the most suitable plan.

Do You Need Private Health Insurance?

The need for private health insurance is a personal choice. It's advisable for individuals who prefer timely access to treatment, private hospitals, or coverage for treatments not available on the NHS. However, those satisfied with NHS care or covered by employer insurance may not require private health insurance.

Pros and Cons of Private Health Insurance

  • Specialist referrals
  • Access to scans and treatments not available on the NHS
  • Reduced waiting times
  • Choice of surgeon and hospital
  • Potential for private room accommodation
  • Coverage for specialist drugs and treatments
  • Higher cost compared to NHS care
  • Premiums increase with age
  • Limited coverage for chronic illnesses and pre-existing conditions
  • Restricted choice of consultants and hospitals

Alternative Options for Private Healthcare

Individuals can consider using savings to cover medical costs, paying for private consultations for expert opinions, or exploring alternative insurance options like income protection to mitigate financial risks during illness or accidents.

Five Things to Consider When Buying Private Health Insurance

  1. Seek advice from financial advisers or brokers. WeCovr advisers provide such advice at no cost to you researching the largest providers in the market.
  2. Explore ways to reduce costs, such as adjusting coverage modules.
  3. Evaluate the possibility of switching policies while considering age and health status.
  4. Provide accurate medical history to avoid claim rejection.
  5. Read policy details thoroughly, including coverage, limits, excess options, and discounts.

Other Types of Insurance to Consider

Apart from private health insurance, individuals should prioritise insurance that safeguards against financial difficulties during illness or accidents, such as income protection, to ensure financial stability in challenging times.

Why get private health insurance?

Health insurance allows you get back on your feet quicker:

✅ Avoid long NHS waiting lists of many weeks and get treated faster with private medical insurance, which can be really important for a successful recovery
✅ Get early diagnosis so you can get the treatment you need right away done privately
✅ Business owners can save on their tax bill with private medical insurance
✅ You are free to choose your surgeon or hospital to suit your needs by place and time
✅ You often get a private room with better facilities for your treatment or surgery
✅ With private medical health insurance you gain access to advanced treatments not available on the NHS

Benefits offered by private health insurance

Private medical health insurance is an insurance policy that covers the costs of private healthcare, from diagnosis to treatment. You just pay an affordable monthly premium that covers all or some of the cost of treatment for acute conditions that develop after your health insurance policy has begun.

Our mission is to put you in touch with not only the best, but the most suitable private medical health insurance companies. With even more risk on the rise for personal health today, it makes more sense than ever to have private medical health insurance cover.

👍 Many people are very thankful that they had their private medical health insurance cover in place before running into some serious health issues. Private medical health insurance is as important as life insurance for protecting your family's finances.

Important Fact!

Why increasing numbers of individuals and families opt for PMI insurance

👉 We insure our cars, houses, bicycles and even bags! Yet our health is one the most precious things we have.

People buy life, critical illness and private medical health insurance for a variety of reasons – easily one of the most important insurance purchases an individual or family can make in their lifetime. PMI insurance is still seen as a luxury in the UK. Indeed, only around 11% of the population has private medical insurance. However, an increasing number of people are taking out private medical insurance due to a number of reasons:
  • Avoid NHS waiting lists and be treated more quickly
  • Faster diagnosis (comprehensive cover)
  • More access to latest cancer drugs and treatments, some of which may be unavailable on the NHS
  • Greater choice over where and when your treatment takes place
  • Have a private room should you need treatment in hospital
Our award-winning FCA-authorised insurance partner experts are ready to provide you with a FREE Consultation.

👍 Simply get your affordable private medical health insurance plan in place for the necessary peace of mind! Just tap or click the button below to book a FREE call now! 👇

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Any questions?

Do I need Private Medical Insurance if I have Life Insurance?

Life Insurance and Private Medical Insurance cover you for two different purposes, so you will need to assess your needs but may wish to consider holding the two policies. Private Medical Insurance covers you if you get sick or need treatment and want or need to go privately. Life Insurance covers you in the case of death, giving a payout to family/those left behind.

If you prefer to get straight into treatment in the private sector without the long waiting times with the NHS, or you just prefer the private sector anyway, without having to pay it all yourself, then you would need to have Private Medical Insurance to cover it. Sometimes treatments and drugs that are not covered by the NHS can be covered by Private Medical Insurance.

It's free to use WeCovr to find health insurance - we never charge you for quotes. Health or private medical insurance is an investment that can pay for itself the first time you might need medical treatment.

It depends on your personal choice and preferences. If you are prepared to limit yourself to NHS-covered treatments only and can or want to endure long waiting times to get into treatment, then yes, NHS might work for you. Your cover there is free. If you don't want to be exposed to long waiting times or if your treatment is not covered by the NHS, then you would benefit from Private Medical Insurance.

Private Medical Insurance is an important financial product that insurance companies take a lot of care and diligence so speaking to real human beings ensures that they understand your requirements fully so that you can get the right cover.

All of our partners are carefully vetted and authorised by the FCA, which means they are held to the highest standards that the FCA expects from them and treat all customers fairly!

Our insurance partners give us a few pounds when you take out a policy with one of their experts.


Who Are WeCovr?

WeCovr is an insurance specialist for people valuing their peace of mind and a great service.

👍 WeCovr will help you get your life insurance, critical illness insurance, private medical health insurance, over-50s funeral insurance and senior life insurance quote in no time thanks to our wonderful super-friendly expert partners ready to assist you every step of the way.

Just a quick and simple form and an easy conversation with our FCA-authorised life insurance, critical illness insurance and private medical insurance partner experts and your valuable insurance policy is in place for that needed peace of mind!