Research conducted by Saga Health has shown the healthcare needs of the over 50s are changing, with hygiene and cleanliness of hospitals growing in importance over the last two years.
In 2007 and 2009, the top reason leading the over 50s to purchasing private medical insurance was to avoid the NHS waiting lists. Next most important was the freedom to choose when and where to receive medical treatment.
The rise in coverage of MRSA cases in NHS hospitals has resulted in people now focusing on the cleanliness of hospitals, which jumped to third most important concern in 2009.Two out of three were worried about cleanliness and hygiene levels and only one in 10 happy with the levels of hygiene in NHS hospitals. Recuperating in comfort is also much more important now, than it was in 2007.
Nine out of ten over 50s say they were comfortable or very comfortable to receive guests in private medical accommodation, compared to just over a third in NHS accommodation. Over 50s are also happier for their grandchildren to visit them in a private hospital compared to NHS hospitals.
When thinking about purchasing Private Medical Insurance, it is important to consider the full range of benefits on offer. Unrestricted visiting hours and free car parking can make it easier and more convenient for family and friends to visit. In addition, the privacy of your own room, relaxed environment and home comforts such as individual TVs and refreshments, are important factors, which can aid a speedy recovery.
Andrew Goodsell of Saga says, "Today's over 50s are more active than ever before and want to live life to the full. If they suffer a medical problem they want to get treated and recuperate as quickly as possible. No wonder over 2 million people aged 50 and over choose private medical insurance".