What's better? Private or NHS healthcare?
Health cash plans : Types of cover
A large number of insurers have standard company products, and some are prepared to tailor larger schemes to individual companies.
Health cash is increasingly a product sold to employers as an employee benefit. In recent years, this has been offered to medium sized companies, often insuring as few as 10 employees.
There are three main options:
- Company paid: the employer pays all the premium
- Voluntary: the company enables individuals to buy cover by deduction from their wages
- Part paid: where both employer and employee pay a share
Simple and innovative corporate healthcare plans cost from as little as £1 per week, per employee, and provide a valuable employee benefit.
They can be an affordable way to encourage proactive employee health and provide a valuable employee benefit as part of a company's flexible benefits scheme. Offers a wide range of cash benefits and services with cover for dependent children included in many benefits too.
Health cash plans are considered to be a cost effective way for employers to show they care about their employees by investing in their health and well-being and they may help reduce absenteeism due to ill health.
Implementing new employee benefits can be perceived as an administrative burden but these are one of the most simple and cost effective options available to employers. No medicals are required for employees to be covered.
All the workforce can benefit from health cash plans. Different levels of cover can be provided and cover can be extended to include partners and children.
Health cash plans are quick and easy to implement throughout an entire workforce.
A healthy workforce is a happy workforce - employees feel valued and so are motivated, productive and loyal.
Company health cash plans for medium-sized and larger organisations can include health benefits not on products for the self-employed and small business.
Health cash plans providing dental cover are listed on the right. Select a plan to view details of what is offered.
Who is a dental cover scheme for?
Some people cannot afford a full cover health cash plan, but want help towards paying for dental care. Some plans also include optical care. There are few dental cover plans as many providers argue that people can get dental and optical care within a package, and can limit what they spend by choosing one of the lower levels of benefit.
What kinds of dental cover scheme are there?
There is no standard dental insurance policy, so each insurer differs on what they provide in the way of dental cover, what extras they include/exclude, and whether or not the dental plan has any choices. Most dental cover includes routine visits to the dentist, prescription charges or cosmetic work. Some policies cover emergency visits and/ or treatment following an accident, some do not.
Some dental cash plans also include Optical, which is visits to opticians. This usually includes costs of eyesight tests, prescription spectacles, and contact lenses. Cover usually excludes repairs to frames, non-prescription glasses and contact lens solutions.
Health cash plans of this type are listed on the right. Select a plan to view details of what is offered.
Who is a limited cover scheme for?
Some people cannot afford a full cover health cash plan, but want the basic costs of some common health expenses covered. Another group is those who do not see why they should pay for a policy with screening, helplines and lots of extras that they are unlikely to use.
There are few limited cover plans as many insurers argue that people can limit what they spend on a full package by choosing one of the lower levels of benefit.
What kinds of limited cover scheme are there?
There is no standard policy, so each insurer differs on what they cover, what extras they include/exclude, and whether or not the limited cover has any choices.
Some limited cover health cash plans only offer Dental and Optical cover.
As the default retirement age has been abolished and more people are living longer, the days of automatically retiring at 60 or 65 have gone. Even if not working full-time, many older people work part -time.
Although NHS charges for some older groups are reduced, there are still some costs and extras.
Sadly, as we get older, the number of times we need health care to repair the body, tends to increase.
Even if you are in full time work, you may be reluctant to pay for a full policy with covers such as pregnancy or for young children at home, which are no longer relevant. But you may have more need for mobility aids and other help.
Health cash plans providing a package of benefits are listed on the right. Select a plan to view details of what is offered.
Providing a pre-set package of benefits and limits keeps costs down for insurers and makes it easier for customers to buy a product. Insurers use their knowledge to decide what is best for the average person or family. A particular package may or may not be the best solution for you.
A packaged policy means that you have no choice on what covers or benefits you can include or exclude. Most insurers offer a range of benefit levels to suit different budgets. There are limits on amounts that can be claimed by £, % and number of days.
What's in a package?
There is no such thing as a standard package. Each provider has their own ideas.
Most health cash plans include cash benefits towards hospital in-patient treatment, specialist consultations, routine optical and dental treatment, physiotherapy, complementary medicine and maternity amongst others. Some offer more specialised benefits that may be tailored towards your particular needs such as benefits for illness at home, aftercare and home help.
The benefits commonly covered in health cash plans include:
- allergy testing
- hospital in-patient
- hospital accident admission
- hospital day surgery
- personal accident
- hearing aid
Each insurer differs, and among other benefits on offer are:
- various alternative health treatments
- GP fees
- GP telephone consultation
- hospital parental stay
- hospital in-patient overseas
- psychiatric in patient
- nursing home in-patient
- convalescent home
- long stay
- home help
- pregnancy complications
- private ambulance or taxi
- absence from work
- worldwide cover
- telephone helplines
- health screening
- health club discounts
- prescription charges
A limit means the total amount that an insurer will pay in a year for a particular benefit. These limits can be expressed as:
- amount £ per year
- amount £ per month
- amount £ per week
- amount £ per day
- number of days or nights
- number of weeks