What health insurance covers
A health insurance plan is designed to cover the treatment of acute medical conditions which first appear after the start of the policy. Generally, each health insurance product comes with a core cover which provides a basic level of cover, on top of which you may be able to add extra benefits and adjust your cover limits, enhancing your protection.
The core plan will usually include inpatient and day-patient treatment and sometimes cancer cover too. In addition to the core cover, depending on your plan, you can select other health benefits such as:
- Outpatient cover
- Physiotherapy treatment
- Alternative therapies (osteopath, chiropractor, acupuncturist or podiatrist)
- Dental cover
- Optical benefit
- Mental health cover
- Private GP
Our Freedom Elite core plan includes full inpatient and day-patient treatment, comprehensive cancer cover, MRI, CT and PET scans, NHS cash benefit and 24/7 access to a virtual GP.
Limits on your health insurance benefits may also apply. You can usually adjust some of these limits based on your preferences when buying your health plan.
What health insurance doesn’t cover
Although each health insurance policy and provider may have their own list of what they don’t cover, some common exclusions include:
- Conditions and symptoms which were present before the start of the policy – these are called pre-existing conditions
- Chronic illnesses which require long-term treatment and have no known cure
- Cosmetic surgery
- Fertility treatment
- Pregnancy and childbirth
- Accident and emergency
What is medical underwriting?
Almost all health insurance policies available in the UK will exclude cover for pre-existing conditions. These are medical conditions (including undiagnosed symptoms) which you had before you started your health insurance policy. Pre-existing conditions are not covered even if you have not seen a doctor or had any treatment.
Medical underwriting is the process used by health insurance companies to identify and exclude pre-existing conditions when processing your application. The most common types of medical underwriting are moratorium underwriting and full medical underwriting. You can find out more about each medical underwriting method in our underwriting.
Choosing your hospital list
With most medical insurance plans, you already have a hospital list included in the core cover. This gives you the list of private hospitals you can use when making a claim. If you decide to use a hospital outside your hospital list, the insurance company will generally not cover the cost of your treatment in full and you must pay the difference. Many insurers allow you to extend your hospital list by paying extra when buying the policy, giving you more choice when it comes to your treatment.
With our Freedom Essentials policy, you don’t have a hospital list because you can use any hospital in the UK or abroad for your treatment.