This sounds like a scare-mongering headline, I know, and the last thing I want to do is instil fear, but I do stand by what I say. If you are healthy, you will be fine, but should you suffer an illness, having private medical insurance really can dramatically alter your chances of survival.
Let me explain. NHS waiting lists are at their highest for seven years with more than 3 million people waiting to start treatment in July. Of this number, 92.9% are facing a wait of up to 18 weeks. 785 people were waiting 52 weeks….that’s a year. Waiting.
Some procedures can wait. Some can wait but with great pain to the patient. Many conditions, whilst waiting can worsen. Would you want to wait four and a half months to see an oncologist? Do you want to risk being one of the 785 waiting a year?
Sadly, I see the implications of these waits in my day to day work. One client, an 82 year old lady, was admitted to A&E in terrible pain but was told she had a potential problem with her gall bladder and that she should ask her GP for an ultrasound in the first instance. In desperation, she used her private policy, was diagnosed at once and was operated on, privately, within 10 days. Another gentleman, 67, had to see his GP three times for tests before cancer of the pancreas was discovered and he was told he wouldn’t see Christmas. Invoking his private policy, I found him the best specialists and he started treatment immediately – happily, he has responded well and has a much better prognosis.
Private health insurance is another cost, I know, and we do all pay for the NHS through our taxes. However, this additional level of cover comes with its own rewards: instant, practical action when things go wrong.
Ask yourself if you can afford to wait to get a problem fixed. Consider if you could bear to wait knowing you had a disease damaging your body.
And if these questions make you uncomfortable, reassure yourself and give me a call – I can help you find some cover to fit your budget.