Health Plans Vs Private Medical Insurance
Universal free health care remains one of the top entitlements UK citizens enjoy, but many patients choose to pay for private care due to long waiting lists, fear of communicable diseases rampant among the general population, and to choose their health care providers. Private medical insurance offers supplemental cover that guarantees quick treatment, fast consultations, and second opinions.
Two Basic Options Offer Diverse Advantages
UK patients who opt for private care can choose between two kinds of insurance cover to make private care an affordable option.
- Private Medical Insurance Cover
- Individual Health Plans
You will need to carefully analyse the advantages and disadvantages of each possibility. The choices are further complicated by a great variety of plans within each category. The first option is traditional medical insurance, which offers numerous cover levels for individuals and families to meet the costs of private medical care. Regardless of which plan you ultimately choose, comparison of the various options will help you identify the best plan for your budget and personal needs.
Health plans offer a second alternative for cover, and these plans operate a bit differently than medical insurance. These low-cost forms of supplemental insurance offer bespoke solutions for specific health needs, reducing out-of-pocket expenses by offering cover for routine treatment options and everyday health expenses. Health plans offer cash back up to certain limits to reimburse families for the cash they routinely spend for health management.
Private Medical Insurance
Private insurance cover offers numerous plans that might cover many health expenses such inpatient and outpatient care, alternative medicines, dental expenses, private ambulance service, optical benefits, dental surgery, and home nursing. Usually, premium services require a higher level of cover for dental, optical, homeopathy, or private ambulance services. You should check the details of what types of cover various providers offer in their insurance packages to determine the best fit for you and your family.
Insurance cover generally includes treatments, specialist consultations, surgery, tests, scans, X-rays, and hospital beds. The basic cover for inpatient services remains the same whether you choose a basic plan or premium package.
Basic plans offer limited specialist consultations for outpatients and full cover for such essentials as scans, diagnostic testing, chemotherapy, and radiation treatments.
The costs associated with senior and long-term care often cause people to lose their homes. Regular cover does not pay these ongoing expenses, so many people opt for long-term care insurance to protect their homes. If you have substantial assets, you will be required to pay these expenses, and NHS will not cover them.
You can reduce your premiums by shopping for the best value and choosing your options carefully. You can realise additional savings by choosing the following alternatives.
- Adding excesses will save you money, and the savings will vary among providers and policies. Most excesses fall somewhere between £100 and £1,000. Choosing the lower figure could save about 5 percent on insurance premiums, while the larger figure might reduce premiums as much as 35 percent.
- Reduced hospital lists and six-week waiting options also reduce premiums substantially. Choosing to exclude London hospitals will also save you money. If you live in the suburbs or outside London, you should certainly select this option. UK residents in Northern Ireland and Wales should also benefit from this insurance provision.
Bespoke Health Plans
Health plans allow you to tailor insurance cover for specific protection against illnesses that run in the family or to match your personal medical history. The question for most people is not whether they need a health plan, but what kind of plan might work best for them, offering the greatest potential benefits for the least amount of money.
You can choose special protection to provide the type of care you want by finding the right health plan. Many people choose cash plans that add supplemental cover for common health problems, including minor illnesses. For many people, their greatest fear is contracting cancer or developing heart disease. You can choose a health plan that offers cover only for these conditions, and you will get an affordable rate.
Cash Health Plans
Cash plans offer anywhere from 50 to 100-percent reimbursement on routine health expenses up to certain predefined limits. Often this cover is available for your partner or children at no additional cost. These plans feature very affordable premiums, depending on the level of cover you select.
Typical benefits that health plans might cover include many of the following treatments.
- Maternity or adoption expenses
- Dental and optical care, including laser treatments
- Chiropractic treatments
- Health Screening
- Hospital day admissions
- Hearing aids
You can find the right health plan that offers the kind of cover that best suits your needs by comparing benefits of the different plans and insurers. It is not difficult to find a cash plan that suits your budget.
Insurance – Necessity or Luxury?
You have many choices to investigate before selecting insurance cover, or you may choose to use NSF for free. Medical care is a very personal decision, and you should choose the options that make you comfortable. Medical insurance and health plans offer different pricing structures, benefits, and exclusions. For example, insurance might not cover pre-existing conditions or psychiatric care.
Deciding whether you need any cover at all is also a personal choice. UK residents often have access to public transportation, but many people elect to buy cars because they give them greater mobility options. Insurance cover or health plans offer similar advantages of choice. In any event, proper health care is not a luxury, but an essential need. If you feel NHS cannot provide the right level of care for your family, you should get additional protection.