Our health is perhaps our greatest and most treasured possession in life, yet many people overlook health insurance as an option that is too expensive. Although health insurance can cost a lot, there are some great deals to be had and if you can afford it then it might help save your life. Here are some benefits and tips about health insurance:
What is private health insurance?
Health insurance covers the cost of private medical treatment for curable illness or injury. Private health insurance means that your treatment is paid for and takes place in a private hospital. You usually pay a premium monthly or yearly for the level of cover that you desire. Private health insurance is designed to give you the peace of mind to have elective treatment faster than you could on the NHS.
Benefits of health insurance
The obvious benefit of health insurance is that you don't have to wait for treatment. With the NHS being stretched to the limit many people have to wait for operations and treatment whilst in discomfort and pain. With private insurance your treatment is covered and you can have the treatment much more quickly, whilst also being in the comfort of private accommodation. This gives people the peace of mind knowing that if they need any elective treatment they will not have to wait for it. If you wanted private treatment but did not have insurance, the fees would be extremely high. Even a simple MRI scan done privately can cost over £1000, so having insurance to cover this extremely cost effective.
Levels of cover
The level of cover you receive depends on how much you are willing to pay and what you want. Policies can cover you just for surgery, or for other treatments like physiotherapy and acupuncture. Some policies will cover you for all of these things, but expect to pay quite a lot of money in premiums for all the benefits. The amount you have to pay also depends on your age and current health status.
Things not covered
Although private medical insurance can cover you for most curable acute illnesses, there are a number of things it does not cover you for. Normally when you take out health insurance you will be asked about your medical history and to provide documents detailing past medical treatment. Anything that you have problems with already will not be covered by your policy. Also, you won't be covered for things outside the scope of private health insurance, like accident and emergency admittance. Other examples of things that are usually not covered are psychiatric illness, long-term incurable illnesses, GP services and regular dental treatment.
Getting medical insurance
There are a number of providers of medical insurance, both online and offline. It pays to shop around to find a good deal for the level of cover you want. Although medical insurance can be pricey with full cover for someone over 50 costing thousands of pounds a year, the benefits are immeasurable. Even if you claim just once in a few years you will have saved yourself time and money. If you look around you will be able to find a reasonably priced health insurance policy to suit your needs.
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Peter Kenny is a writer for creditcards-gb.co.uk.
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