Is health insurance worth it?


Nov 29, 2014
Is health insurance worth it?

Unless you’ve fallen ill in the past, your wellbeing is something that you may well take for granted; so there’s a good chance you may not have considered what exactly would happen if your health started to fail.

If the worst happens, you’ll want to receive fast treatment from the best doctors in comfortable surroundings, something that the NHS might not necessarily be able to deliver.

But is health insurance worth the extra cost? We take a close look at the facts and consider whether health insurance is really worth considering.

Why go private when we have the NHS?
The NHS may have its critics but the UK’s free health service offers many things that other countries can’t offer its residents, including free hospital stays, treatment and consultations with some of the world’s best doctors.

If you’ve paid your taxes and National Insurance, you quite rightly would expect the NHS to take care of you if you fall ill.

Do you want to raid the piggy bank and pay for health insurance cover?
But if the worst happened, you’d want to know that you could access the best care immediately, without having to endure waiting lists and that your treatment options weren’t being limited by government budget cutbacks and cost considerations.

Unfortunately, the NHS simply can’t provide the comprehensive service it might like to, with patients often having to wait for longer periods as well as only being offered a much more limited range of treatments.

For younger lives
When you’re in your 20s, 30s and 40s you may not seriously consider the possibility of falling ill. Unfortunately disease and ill health can strike anyone without warning so it’s a good idea to be prepared.

If you have to wait a long time for treatment, you could end up having to spend a protracted amount of time off work, creating financial pressures. Having health insurance means you can skip to the top of the queue and won’t have to wait to see a consultant.

If you’re young and healthy and have a good lifestyle (such as not smoking) you might be surprised at how low the health insurance quotes will be. Because you’re a much lower risk, you can enjoy all the benefits of being covered without having to break the bank.

Some types of health insurance also include cover for children, so if you have a young family you’ll have the peace of mind of knowing that they will be better protected too. To find out which companies offer this, just compare health insurance quotes online and you’ll see what benefits are included, without any hassle.

Health insurance for those aged 50+
When you’re in your 50s, 60s and 70s - and beyond! - there’s an increasing risk that you might become ill so it might be worth putting protection in place before it’s too late.

By taking out health insurance before you become ill, you’ll benefit from cheaper health insurance quotes and a more comprehensive range of cover too.
 
Health insurance is reassuring for people aged 50+
If you’ve been unlucky enough to have already fallen ill or been diagnosed with a chronic condition, it doesn’t mean you should give up the idea of health insurance. By choosing a provider who is experienced in offering insurance to the over-50s you will find a far more competitive quote.

Knowing that if you fall ill and have to stay in hospital you’ll be in comfortable surroundings, and you can have visitors at any time will be a huge relief.

It’s possible to cut costs too by opting either for reduced cover, to pay part of the costs yourself or by simply agreeing to be treated at a wider range of hospitals (which means you won’t have to compromise on quality but may have to travel a bit further). If you compare health insurance online, you will be able to get a good idea of how much each option would cost.

Conclusion
Hopefully you will never need it, but health insurance can provide some reassurance in a world of unknowns; something that could prove invaluable should you become ill. 

Providing you with access to drugs and treatment not offered by the NHS, faster treatment, more comfortable surroundings and the very best doctors, if the worst happens, health insurance can help to cushion the blow.


Ashley Shepherd is an Over 50s Personal Finance Expert

ashley shepherd

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