Health Insurance Policies

Medical insurance companies differ in the types of cover they provide, the level of cover, and the cost of the insurance, so it is worthwhile shopping around to find the best health insurance for you. Here we will detail the various types of policy to give you an idea of what is available.

Types of Policies

These provide for a stay in hospital should you become ill and they usually cover associated costs such as drugs and follow up consultations. Some medical insurance companies have their own private hospitals whereas with others treatment takes place in an NHS hospital but on a private ward. These private health insurance plans have a big advantage over the NHS as you are able to get treated much more quickly.

The level of cover offered by different insurance companies varies tremendously. Most companies have different levels of cover or a basic ‘Core’ policy to which you can add certain options, which the private health insurance company will detail. An important aspect to bear in mind is that some companies do not provide cover for cancer and some only provide it as an extra whilst others include it on their basic policy. However, there are not many of the latter.

Critical Illness Cover

This type of private health cover pays out a lump sum in the event that you become seriously ill or incapacitated and are not able to continue to work. The illnesses that are included will be specified by the private health insurance company and there will be exclusions for certain conditions. Again the level of cover varies from company to company as do the illnesses that are covered.

Income Protection Schemes

Unlike Critical Illness Cover, Income Protection Schemes do not pay out a lump sum, but instead they pay out a regular monthly amount. This enables you to continue paying your household bills if you become ill. Certain illnesses are excluded from this cover dependant on the health insurance provider who will give you details of these.

Health Cash Plans

These cover you for day-to-day treatments like dental bills, optician’s charges and visits to a physiotherapist. You usually keep your receipts when you have paid for treatment and send them into the insurance provider for a refund. The amount of cover again varies from company to company.

Dental Plans and Optical Plans

Some insurance companies include dental care and optical treatment on a comprehensive Health Cash Plan, whilst others offer an entirely separate policy. These plans in particular can prove popular since dental and optical treatment can be expensive. However, there are usually limits as to the amount that you can claim in any one year.

Choosing the Right Type of Cover

Here are some points to think about when are deciding which type of private health cover to opt for:

• How much can you afford to pay each month?
• Do you want individual health insurance or family health insurance?
• Do you want to reduce your premiums by paying an excess i.e. an amount that you have to pay towards any claims?
• Are there any exclusions on the policy i.e. things that you are not covered for?
• Do you want your policy to include outpatient care or only inpatient care?
• Would you like to be able to choose which hospital you stay in?

The cost of your private health insurance will depend on what is included in the policy and how much the policy pays out in the event of a claim. The premium will also be affected by your age and general state of health.

Now that you have an idea of the types of cover, you may want to find out more. You can do so by filling in our online form which is quick and simple to do. We will then get back to you with some private health insurance quotes, and details of what is included in the cover.

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