Friday, 9 January 2015

Small Group Medical Insurance

So you run a small business or are a sole trader. Why do you and your business need medical insurance ?

Good question.

The answer is that now that you are running your own business or rely on your health to be able to work and earn money for yourself and your family you simply cannot afford to be a slave to the National Health Service (NHS). Now this article is not aiming to run down the NHS, far from it. But it remains a fact that in these days of postcode funding, deteriorating A and E services and growing waits for minor elective procedures most people, if only from a convenience standpoint, do not want to become an NHS statistic. When you add in the fact that most self employed people or business owners simply cannot take time off work to fit in to NHS clinic times (that's once you get your appointment through) Private Medical Insurance (PMI) becomes a vital consideration

So the reason you need PMI is simple - to gain control over your health and ensure that your medical treatment fits in with your work and home lifestyle and of course that treatment is available quickly and when and where you need it.

Primary Care - usually PMI doesn't cover the initial contact with your GP. This remains a core part of the NHS and medical insurers for the most part haven't replicated the primary care/GP structure privately. However some plans may now offer a GP or nurse consultation service (often remotely on Skype or via the telephone) to give more convenience than your local, super busy GP practice. This works very much along the lines of an out of hours GP surgery - the details you give to the insurer GP will eventually end up on your main medical records so the two systems can work hand in hand.

Emergency Treatment - again this remains the remit of the NHS. However, minor issues should always go via your GP and these can often end up being treated privately. Remember never to go to Casualty with minor health worries - the media are full of stories of people arriving at A and E with headaches and other minor ailments - this is one of the reasons why emergency services can be on the brink of collapse - use them sensibly and if you have PMI by all means consider using it for minor problems as well as more expensive medical items.

Minor elective treatment - right in the wheelhouse of medical insurance. Those minor annoying conditions that whilst not life threatening will affect your life in a negative fashion. This is also the type of problem that tends to have long NHS waiting lists and often elective procedures will get cancelled at short notice when NHS hospitals get busier (e.g. in the winter). PMI gives the business owner the capability to have these problems resolved immediately. Having authorised the claim with the insurer following a single GP visit the treatment is provided exactly when you want with the treatment provider of choice at the hospital most convenient to you. In many cases :  initial consult, diagnostic tests, in-patienr or day-case treatment, specialist follow up and recuperation/physio are all complete before you would have even had the initial NHS out-patient appointment through.

Major Health Problems - we all hope that nothing really bad will happen to us or our family, unfortunately sometimes this can happen. The NHS will always look after the seriously ill but business owners need not only the best treatment but also the re-assurance that their cover is in place if the worst happens. Having medical insurance cover in place means that time off work (which can be stressful if income might otherwise stop during a serious illness) is kept to a minimum and if treatment fits in with your schedule and the demands of your business as well as your health then you will tend to get better faster.

Summary - overall PMI cover gives those who cannot take time off work the fastest access to the best in medical treatment as and when required. In the same way you would insure your business vehicle or your income against long term illness (using an income protection plan) you should also insure your body against short term and acute illness.

Cover can be provided for individuals, small one or two member partnerships or companies, larger corporate clients - whatever you need there is a plan out there I can find and recommend. You can also cover your family, staff members - there is total flexibility.

For more information on medical insurance for companies, senior managers, sole traders, trade-ins and the elf employed please contact me on :

07792 075747

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