Nowadays, with the increasing threat to your well-being, all thanks to poor lifestyle habits, you cannot do without medical cover. While National Healthcare Services (NHS) provides for the medical treatments of British citizens for free, there are times when NHS services do not suffice and require you to opt for private medical insurance.
While private medical insurance comes with a number of benefits such as reduced waiting time and access to varied specialist treatments, you can lose a huge sum on paying for the premiums. So, as compared to the NHS, which is free at the point of use from UK citizens, the premium can be a hefty sum.
However, there are still a few reasons that hold the power to convince you to opt for private medical Insurance, some of which are:
- On-demand Access to Medical Care
While NHS Hospitals and treatments are free at the point of use, they are of little use when you are in acute pain and the doctor’s appointment requires you to wait for the coming 6 weeks. In such cases, private medical insurance policies come in handy as they allow you to visit private medical facilities and access doctors as early as they are available.
By providing you quicker access to consultancy and treatments, private medical insurance will save you the risk of aggravating diseases if left untreated.
- Access to Specialised Facilities and Rare Drugs
When you have private medical cover, you gain access to specialised hospitals with state-of-the-art facilities to get treatment for rare illnesses. Such specialised care might not be facilitated by NHS hospitals and can cost you a fortune if not for private cover.
Also, private medical coverage will provide for ongoing medical treatments such as physiotherapy and preventitave care such as diagnosis and specialised tests.
Apart from that, private medical insurance also covers you against rare and specialised drugs, even the ones that are not approved by the NHS.
- Choice of Private Facilities
While NHS provides you a medically safe ward when you are undergoing the treatment, with private medical insurance you can gain access to the comfort of private rooms for overnight hospital stays. This comes with your own set of caregivers and doctors attend to you privately.
Not only do private rooms allow you to get treated in your own time with the best set of professionals, but also gives you peace and quiet which is essential for your speedy healing.
- You have a say in deciding your doctor and consultant
When you get private medical insurance, check with the insurance provider about the autonomy they are providing in deciding the practitioner you go to. In this way, even if the policy costs more, you will be able to decide which consultant you want to be treated by.
When you have the liberty to choose your doctor, you can choose the one who falls within a convenient locality, has a good rapport with you, and probably is aware of your medical history already.
Now that you know the reasons why you might want to invest in private medical insurance, here are some benefits that you must look for in an insurance policy before investing.
- Preventative care
Preventative care includes regular diagnosis, scans, and testing against chronic illnesses so that you don’t end up worsening the condition due to lack of awareness. Many private healthcare insurance policies provide a cover for these because even your insurance provider would not want for your health to deteriorate.
- Cover Against Sports Injuries
Sports injuries, especially the ones encountered while indulging into a dangerous sport are not covered by any type of medical insurance until and unless you have them explicitly covered. However, if you are into extreme sports, you can have your insurance provider devise a separate policy for you.
- In-patient, Day-Care, and Out-Patient Coverage
In-patient coverage refers to the cover against expenses you had to incur due to overnight stay at private hospitals for testing and surgeries. Day-care expenses are, basically, the ones incurred due to testing and diagnosis. Out-patient cover is used when you visit a private, specialised practitioner for seeking second opinion. Make sure that your insurance covers all three aspects of treatment.
However, if you think that your disease does not require out-patient services and you can manage with the rest of the care, you can save money on premiums with basic private healthcare insurance.
- Ongoing Treatments Coverage
The ongoing treatments can be a lifesaver when it comes to your speedy recovery. For instance, physiotherapy plays a crucial part in bringing back mobility in the limbs of accident victims. Therefore, opt for a policy that covers such treatments.
- Flexibility in Selecting Practitioners
While some private policies allow you to visit specialists through General Practitioner referrals, you are seldom given the liberty to select the specialist you would like to visit. Most of them are either located in other parts of the district or you are not able to form a good rapport with them. Therefore, check if the policy allows you seek consultancy and treatment from the specialized that you are more comfortable visiting or not.
- Cover for Pre-existing Medical Conditions
It is strongly advised to disclose everything to your insurance provider concerning your health. Even if it is increasing cholesterol or sugar levels, you must not hide it. If you have a pre-existing medical condition such as diabetes, the insurance company does not consider itself automatically liable to cover the illnesses they arise due to it.
However, if you are looking for cover against pre-existing medical conditions (not chronic ones such as diabetes or cardiovascular disorders), you can get it for higher premiums.
In the end, while you know that benefits of private medical insurance come with eye-watering costs on premiums, you should make sure that the one you avail offers you perfect value for money. That is, your private medical insurance should come with personalized benefits for the healthcare and comfort of you and your family.