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Do you have private health care?

(20 Posts)
PollyFeather Mon 04-Nov-19 20:51:43

And would you recommend it? Am deliberating taking the plunge - it's with Bupa and it's £163 a month for me and DH and that's the full package - I've gone big 😁

Before I commit to it though I just wondered if anyone was with Bupa or had similar cover and if you felt it was worth it?

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Robs20 Mon 04-Nov-19 20:55:03

I do through work. That sounds like a lot to pay per month. I am with axa and its worth it for me - I see a therapist weekly and have seen a psychiatrist twice this year. I have previously had an mri and seen a neurologist through the policy. BUT I pay £100 per year. For £163 a month I wouldn’t do it unless you have a long term condition that the policy would cover...

PollyFeather Mon 04-Nov-19 20:58:09

I have no conditions that I know of - and I know it's expensive. We can afford it but I'm wondering if it's worth it. We are 47 and 48. I saw both my parents get cancer and other issues that they lived with for the past decade before dying and although the NHS is fantastic, they were left floundering a lot of the time and the wait for appointments was just insane and stressful. I don't want this for myself if I can avoid it

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PollyFeather Mon 04-Nov-19 20:59:05

That's brilliant you have it through work! Great perk. I own my own company but there's only two of us so health care off the cards for now grin

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fridaseyebrows Mon 04-Nov-19 21:16:22

I have private healthcare through work for the myself DH and the kids. Honestly, if I didn’t have it through work and I could afford it I would go for it. We are generally pretty healthy but all of us have had a few scares with different things and have really felt quite lucky to be able to access specialists so quickly without having to have an argument with our GP or wait around for appointments and availability at clinics. It’s really helped us put our minds at ease quickly.

Occasionally not everything is covered (London prices!) but we have used it quite a bit and we think it’s worth it.

SippingTea Mon 04-Nov-19 21:16:38

I’m also interested in people’s views. Place marking.

AllTheCakes Mon 04-Nov-19 21:19:39

I have it through work too so only pay the tax on the monthly cost. It’s been great for us to see specialists quickly.

I had Bupa in the past, but we now have Vitality which I would recommend. You can use their video GP service on some policies - great if like me you can’t get a GP appointment for months!

PollyFeather Mon 04-Nov-19 21:54:34

@fridaseyebrows yes I had a bit of a fright in January when I found a lump. I actually booked to be seen privately which was a wait of two days but saw my GP in the meantime and she was so good that she calmed me down enough to cancel the private spot which would have cost me £800. She could feel the lump but said she was not worried and I shouldn't be either but she'd refer me as that's policy. And I managed to wait the ten days or so and it was as she said. Nothing.

But it made me think more that I'd like the peace of mind of health insurance.

But I would like to understand more about it. For example, I have no issues with say, my knees or my ovaries or my stomach. If I was to develop an issue and had severe pain , I'd make a GP appointment and I'd assume the referral for a scan would take time and so on and so forth.

Am I right in thinking that I could develop an issue requiring a scan or whatever. Involve my health care and be seen quickly for a scan etc?

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PollyFeather Mon 04-Nov-19 21:59:32

I'll look at Vitality too, thanks. I've been looking at Bupa because they're known and trusted and have good trustpilot reviews plus I've had personal recommendations. They aren't cheap though but is it a case of getting what you pay for

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BeardedMum Mon 04-Nov-19 22:06:50

I have BUPA through work and also use their GP service for the whole family. Can book appointments any time, no wait time and really good service. I would never use the NHS if I can avoid it!

fridaseyebrows Mon 04-Nov-19 22:10:17

We’re with AXA and we can’t just contact a specialist ourselves, we need to first go to the GP (I also have access to a private GP through work) and they will then issue a referral letter. With that I call up AXA to get a an authorisation code. I usually choose myself which specialist I want to see, or sometimes private GP will recommend. AXA also have a list that they nominate from if you don’t have someone in mind. I then contact the hospital or the specialist directly to arrange an appointment and provide the authorisation code. All billing etc is looking after in the background.

Depending on what additional investigations you need sometimes I need to call AXA up again but that’s not usually a problem.

Last year I had a pain in my neck which came on very suddenly, suspected torn artery in my neck, I saw GP on the Thursday, saw neurologist friday early afternoon, and had an MRI late afternoon. Neurologist called me with the results at about 8pm that evening as soon as they were available. Thankfully I was fine but I was told they didn’t think I would be and had a hospital bed already arranged for me.

That’s probably not the best example as its the kind of emergency case that the NHS can be really good at. But even so I was astonished as to how quick and easy it was. Another example was suspicious swollen glands in DSs neck - wouldn’t go down at all. GP told us NHS referral would take 8 weeks for an ultrasound. We were seen privately twice and had ultrasounds and bloods done in 5 days.

KenDodd Mon 04-Nov-19 22:13:45

I have it through work. It's shit. Numerous admin hoops to jump through while they look for ways to avoid paying (as with other insurance claims). I wish they would just give the money to the NHS, much easier to use.

PollyFeather Mon 04-Nov-19 22:16:49

@KenDodd that's a shame. When I did have it through work, it was very very straightforward and no hoops to jump through. Is that with Bupa or one of the 'big' ones? It shouldn't be like that

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KenDodd Mon 04-Nov-19 22:19:30

I think its WPA.

PollyFeather Mon 04-Nov-19 22:21:15

I've not heard of them but if it's provided for you as a perk then you should be able to use it if need be. Sounds like your work have gone cheap angry

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MaybeitsMaybelline Mon 04-Nov-19 22:25:28

Have it through work as a benefit. Pay tax at 40% on about 2.5k this is with BUPA in a family of four un to 24 years old for the “children”.

Never used it and paid thousands over the years. I suppose that’s a good thing.

KenDodd Mon 04-Nov-19 22:29:30

My MIL had BUPA and needed a hip replacement. They wanted access to her complete medical records before approving the claim. She had only had BUPA for about three years (was with another health insurer before). Turns out she'd been to see the GP about four years before about back pain. BUPA then deemed the hip problem to be a pre existing condition not mentioned when she took out the insurance and refused to pay (after numerous letters back and forth between her BUPA and her GP). She ended up on the NHS and said they were fine.

My FIL had private health insurance his whole healthy life, until he got too old and they decided they wouldn't be renewing his policy anymore. As I said I wish we could just give more money to the NHS.

Ladybirdman Mon 04-Nov-19 22:35:38

My experience isn't hugely relative as I am in Ireland where you have to have private health care (if you don't qualify for a medical card). But here's the thing about health insurance: We pay €2k a year for a family of 4. I have been with this company (VHI) for 30 years-20 together as a married couple. Two years previously we had altered our policy. We had been paying much more (with no claim other than the births of our babies for which we paid €3k for each on top) but couldn't afford it so graded down. My husband became ill with a random condition and the insurance refused to say whether they would pay for the essential operation until a doctor had confirmed that the condition pre-existed (whether discovered 18 months ago or not did not matter ie, if it had been a tumour which had been growing for that length of time they had a get-out clause) the 18 month earlier change. DH had the operation but we did not know whether we would be billed the €18k hmm it cost until 6 weeks after the operation. On one hand he would not have got the operation so soon without insurance but on the other: 30 years of paying those shysters with no claims and they made us sweat!

I think there is a lack of scruples where insurance is concerned (in this country anyway) and they have you over a barrel with fear of the what if's but they are not a guarantee of peace of mind in the worst scenario. I dont know if i lived in the UK, I'd be tempted to save that money for use for consultants if necessary and rely on your NHS for the rest (here it is often the same doctors, etc but just priority/top of the queue that you pay for)

Curlysurprise Tue 05-Nov-19 17:32:54

I have Aviva thru DH work. I used it last year to get a fast ENT referral for possible cancer
NHS Referral was minimum 12 weeks, by which time I was diagnosed and halfway thru treatment for a very aggressive cancer.
Diagnosis was private but treatment had to be NHS ( was great btw)
Literally saved my life.

Answerthequestion Tue 05-Nov-19 19:38:15

Yes x1 million. We’ve always had it and used it for various things. My husband had an extremely rare and aggressive cancer which the NHS told us was untreatable. Privately we were able to choose his team, oncologist and surgeon and he had access to a wide range of treatments which the NHS wouldn’t offer. This absolutely extended his life by a couple of years. As an in patient there were always enough specialist staff 24/7 and every single part of his treatment was exemplary. I wouldn’t be without it.

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