In today’s day and age, with medical care being a strong necessity and with so many options to consider in the UK, what is the best solution?
Sable Wealth, Partner Company to 1st Contact, explains that it is crucial for individuals to understand all the options that are available to them, in order to make the best decision to match their personal circumstances.
They are your first line of call and you can access them through the NHS or privately.
NHS GP: You can register with your local GP.
+ Cover and appointments are “free” (as you’ve paid through your NI contributions).
– Getting appointments within a reasonable time frame can be a lottery depending on where you are.
Private GP: You can pay for a private GP appointment.
+ Availability of immediate appointments or appointments outside normal work hours
+ You may highly value the level of service by a private GP with a more personalised relationship.
– You pay for each appointment
There are a number of private medical practices. We suggest that you should speak to friends or colleagues in order to find one that suits you. We would highly recommend the services of www.mediclinic.co.uk
Specialist or Hospital Care
The NHS is the sole provider of emergency care in the UK but for scheduled hospital care there is the choice of NHS or private treatment.
+ This service is free.
– It can have long lead times or restrictions for appointments.
– Some treatments, especially for cancer can be limited.
+ You choose the treatment and service you receive, as and when you receive it and match this with your budget accordingly.
+ Offers access to treatments that are restricted or not available through the NHS.
+ Availability of private wards/hospitals with more choice and comfort than the NHS.
– You’re paying hard earned cash for it.
So what are your options?
You can either rely on the NHS for all your treatments or enhance it by paying to go private. Private GPs charge on an appointment basis and Private Medical Insurance is bought via an annual policy. Ultimately Private Medical Insurance (PMI) is designed to complement rather than replace the NHS.
How does it work?
PMI treatment usually starts with a referral to a specialist by the NHS or your private GP and once the referral has been placed, you would contact your insurer who will assist with choosing a relevant specialist. There are a number of different providers in this space, all offering varying levels of cover. It is worth comparing providers and then choosing the specific level of cover you would like.
Sable advises that for the sake of simplicity and transparency, the WPA offer an excellent service http://www.wpa.org.uk/1stcontact . WPA are a not-for-profit company and offer a very modular policy that enables you to build a policy that matches your need and budget without compromising your level of cover.
Some of the benefits include:
- No penalties for claiming, no matter how much you claim.
- Shared responsibility for 25% of claims up to a predefined limit, above that limit WPA pay 100%.
- Freedom of choice. You can be treated at ANY hospital or by ANY specialist in the UK.
- Tailored packages for contractors & freelancers.
- Options to upgrade outpatient, therapy, dental or Worldwide cover.
- A cash plan product called Health Top-Up that enables you to claim back day to day medical costs such as dental treatment, opticians appointments, prescriptions etc….
Private Medical Insurance (PMI) is a popular choice due to the comfort and the availability of treatments that NHS is not always able to supply.
For more information or to seek some expert advice on medical insurance cover options, contact Sable Wealth on firstname.lastname@example.org or 0845 345 1633