Retired Health insurance
Why maintaining your health in retirement is of the utmost importance
What aspects of your retirement are you most looking forward to? The opportunity to devote more time to your favourite hobbies and interests, spend quality time with your grandchildren, or experience the wonders of the world. However, you envision your retirement, being in good health will make every aspect of that time more enjoyable. According to the research conducted by the Institute of Economic Affairs, retirement can have a detrimental effect on both the retiree’s physical and mental health.
We are all at an increased risk of serious illnesses as we get older, which is why it is essential that we have access to high-quality medical treatment that can get us back to our full health as quickly as possible and allow us to have a more enjoyable retirement.
The NHS is currently facing several challenges.
The NHS had a backlog prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and waiting times have increased since then. The NHS is also having trouble recruiting qualified staff.
As a population, we are living longer, which means that more of us require care for chronic conditions and illnesses that become more common as we age. All of these factors combine to create significant challenges for the NHS.
What is private health insurance?
Private health insurance enables you to receive private healthcare treatment whenever required. Health insurance companies operate in a variety of ways. Some have their own hospitals and treatment centres, while others work with NHS hospitals and pay to use their facilities. There are also combinations of the two.
Private health insurance allows you to bypass NHS waiting list
If you have private health insurance, you are able to bypass the NHS waiting list and receive treatment more quickly. In the event that you require inpatient treatment, you will have the option of staying in a private room where you will be able to relax and get better in privacy.
Advantages of having health insurance after the age of 65
You’ve put in a lifetime of hard work, and its finally time to relax and enjoy your retirement. You’ve got everything planned out, but then an unexpected illness arises, and now you have to put everything on hold. When you have health insurance, you won’t have to worry because you’ll have quick access to treatment and can return to enjoying your life.
Additional options (Benefit add-ons)
Coverage options include inpatient care, outpatient care, and many others.
The benefits may include quicker access to diagnostic tests and scans, day-patient and inpatient treatment, and outpatient cover; however, these benefits will vary depending on the type of health insurance coverage that you select (although this is typically an optional extra)
Access 24/7 virtual GP services
The majority of health insurance plans also include access to a virtual general practitioner (GP) service that is available around the clock and over the phone or online. This is a significant benefit in a time when it can be challenging to schedule appointments with a GP.
Adjust the terms of your policy so that it meets your needs
You have the ability to tailor your health insurance policy to meet your specific requirements. If your family has a history of certain health conditions, you can ensure that they are covered by your health insurance.
Some insurance companies provide discounts on gym memberships and full-body check-ups.
What is a Full Body check-up? Full body check-up is a comprehensive health examination or diagnostic scan of your entire body, including your heart, kidney, liver, and lungs, to evaluate your current health status and screen you to determine if you have any obvious warning signs or if there are any abnormalities within your body.
How does private health insurance work?
Private medical insurance begins with selecting the best health insurance company for your needs. Health insurance plans can vary widely between providers, though most major companies provide at least some level of coverage that is standard across the industry. Your policy’s premium and level of coverage can be tailored to meet your specific needs and financial situation. Then, after gathering quotes, you can compare health insurance plans. When you feel ready, you can start paying the monthly premiums as soon as you agree to the terms of the policy.
Make a claim for treatment when you require it.
After that, if you require medical treatment, you can file a claim with your insurance company. The exact procedure will vary depending on the type of underwriting used; however, your insurers will determine whether your policy covers the treatment you require. If your claim is approved, your health insurance will pay for the necessary medical treatment.
You have control over who treats you and where you are treated.
You have the option of choosing which consultant to see and where you will receive treatment. Your treatment provider will walk you through the entire process, from the initial consultation to any additional rehabilitation you may require.
What does health insurance cover?
Health insurance is intended to provide private medical treatment for acute conditions that can be cured with a single course of treatment, allowing you to get back to living your life. This does not imply that you can only receive medical treatment for short-term illnesses. All the major providers offer cancer coverage, which pays for private treatment over a longer period of time. Here are some examples of medical insurance coverage.
Inpatient and day-patient treatment
Most health insurance policies cover both inpatient and outpatient care as standard. If you need to stay in a hospital for surgery or other treatment, you’ll be able to do so in a private room, either at a private hospital run by your insurance company or at an NHS hospital.
You may also be admitted to a day-patient unit for a longer period of time but not overnight. This type of care is frequently provided to cancer patients whose treatments are only a few hours long.
You can choose to include outpatient coverage in your health insurance policy. It will include outpatient private medical care as well as the tests and scans required to provide you with an initial diagnosis. However, this is usually only available as an add-on, and you’ll have to pay a higher premium to include it.
Other optional extras available with medical insurance
You can supplement your health insurance with a variety of optional extras. These will vary depending on your insurance policy, but some of the following may be included.
1. Dental and optical care
When you reach the age of 60, you are automatically eligible for a free eye test; however, you may still be required to pay for your glasses unless you or your partner receive a list of benefits. You’ll
have to pay for dental care, including routine check-ups, unless you or your partner receive pension credit.
We recommend that you compare the costs of health insurance with the costs of regular check-ups and treatments, as well as glasses or contact lenses, because health insurance can help cover the costs of all of these, and you may save money in the long run.
2. Mental health treatment
Many insurers provide some level of mental health support as standard. This could include access to a helpline or even a brief course of therapy. If you require more intensive care, such as inpatient treatment for a psychiatric condition, you will need to add this to your medical insurance if you want private treatment.
3. A more comprehensive choice of hospitals
Most health insurance companies have a network of hospitals and treatment centres spread across the UK, allowing you to receive treatment in a convenient location. However, their standard list can be limited at times, especially if you live in London. This is simply due to higher costs for specialised treatments, staffing, and other facilities in some areas. When comparing health insurance, it’s important to look at each provider’s hospital list to see if the locations available are convenient.
4. Additional treatments
Many treatments and therapies that are not routinely available on the NHS will be covered by health insurance; however, there are limitations. If you want to try alternative therapies like homoeopathy or acupuncture in addition to traditional treatment, this is usually only available as an add-on.
If you need to see a physiotherapist, acupuncturist, chiropractor, or osteopath, you can also choose to increase the number of treatment sessions available.
It is often more difficult for senior citizens to obtain travel insurance. This is especially true if you have a history of high-risk conditions. Some health insurance policies allow you to add travel insurance to your policy, allowing you to access travel insurance while saving money.
Other related additional benefits may include access to medical care while travelling. This could make all the difference if you intend to travel the world during your retirement.
6. Cash benefit
Most insurers include a cash benefit from the NHS as part of their coverage. This means that you can choose NHS treatment over private medical insurance. Alternatively, you may require treatment for a condition not covered by your health insurance.
An NHS cash benefit allows you to receive a lump sum of money that you can spend however you see fit. This is frequently included as a core benefit, but you can choose to expand it to cover a wider range of treatments and expenses. These could include health screening, NHS car parking charges, or going to A&E for a medical emergency even if you aren’t admitted.
What’s excluded from health insurance coverage?
Health insurance only covers acute conditions that can be resolved with a course of treatment. This means that you will be unable to obtain health insurance for chronic conditions such as asthma, diabetes, or angina. Your GP or an NHS consultant will need to monitor and treat them.
Pre-existing conditions are excluded
Pre-existing conditions are also excluded by health insurance policies. This includes any conditions for which you received treatment or advice in the five years prior to purchasing health insurance. Your insurers’ approach to this will depend on the type of underwriting you select.
Full medical underwriting may help you understand what is and isn’t covered.
If you select full medical underwriting, you will be asked for information about your medical history when you apply for the policy, and your insurers will confirm what is and isn’t covered right away. In contrast, with moratorium underwriting (the less expensive option), you will not be asked about
your medical history until you file a claim. Both types will impose a two-year moratorium on any pre-existing conditions. If you haven’t made a claim during that time period, your insurers may consider adding it to your policy.
standard exclusions for health insurance. Every insurance company has a standard list of exclusions. Typical examples include:
• Treatments for addiction
• Cosmetic surgery or cosmetic procedures
• Maternity and pregnancy cover (Once you reach the age of 65, this is less likely to be a crucial factor to consider, but if you decide to add other adult family members to your policy, it might affect them.)
Best medical insurance providers for people over the age of 65
Here is a summary of the best health insurers on the market and the services, they provide for over 65’s.
Aviva’s Healthier Solutions policy offers comprehensive health insurance for people of all ages. You can get treatment at a variety of hospitals by using their ‘Expert Select’ or ‘Hospital Options’ lists. As part of its core package, the policy includes excellent and comprehensive cancer coverage. A digital GP is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and a 24-hour stress counselling website is available. They provide an option to protect your no-claims discount and guarantee that your premiums will not be increased at your first renewal as long as you haven’t made a claim. A discount is also available if you purchase a policy as a couple.
Aviva only covers the United Kingdom, the Channel Islands, and the Isle of Man, so you won’t be able to get travel or international health insurance if you’re planning a round-the-world cruise
2. Axa Health
AXA Health provides comprehensive coverage and has no upper age limit for health insurance. They include day-patient and inpatient care in their core packages, and their outpatient coverage is very affordable. Their hospital list includes 250 private facilities in the UK, so there’s likely a suitable treatment provider near you.
Outpatient benefits include unlimited physiotherapy and chiropractic care. This could be ideal if you live an active lifestyle or if you have a family history of joint replacements.
Bupa is a well-known provider, thanks in part to their healthcare services, which include insurance and a network of private hospitals throughout the United Kingdom. Their insurance provides comprehensive coverage with a wide range of treatments and therapies, and there is no upper age limit for new policyholders.
They’re one of the few providers who will let you get cancer treatment without first seeing your doctor, and they provide mental health support as standard.
If you choose Bupa as your insurer, you will also be able to take advantage of discounts and rewards available only to Bupa policyholders. Even if you do not purchase a policy, it is worthwhile to visit their website for articles and tips on healthy living.
Vitality is dedicated to assisting its customers in living long and healthy lives. They go above and beyond to encourage policyholders to live a healthy lifestyle by providing various incentives and discounts, such as fitness tracker watches and gym memberships.
If you haven’t needed hospital treatment in the three years prior to enrolling in health insurance, you’ll receive a 10% discount, and your renewal premiums will be determined by your health and activity levels. This could be a disadvantage if you prefer a slower pace of life or prefer not to have technology track your movements.
How to receive free medical insurance advice before purchasing
if you have never considered private healthcare before, the variety of available insurance options can be overwhelming. You may spend time researching or contacting insurers, only to discover that they do not cover certain medical tests or conditions. The quoted monthly premium may not be affordable.
Before purchasing health insurance, seek free advice from an FCA-authorised expert.
When you speak with a broker who is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, you can receive expert guidance on the most suitable insurance products. They are knowledgeable about the specifics of each health plan, allowing them to advise you on the best coverage for your circumstances and budget.
Compare before purchasing
My Health Protected articles are written to provide you with information to help you conduct your research. As well as a quote We’ll also provide you with a comparison quote, so you are able to compare your options. as a reputable, regulated broker who can provide you with expert advice.