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Self Employed Health Insurance

Health Insurance for Self Employed People

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lf Employed Health Insurance 

When you’re self-employed it’s often even more important that you get quick and timely medical treatment when you’re ill, because self-employed people don’t get statutory sick pay when they’re off work sick. 

This type of private health insurance policy can help self-employed people avoid long NHS waiting times, and the most comprehensive policies can also speed up the diagnosis process, which again could reduce the time it takes for you to recover and get back to work. 

Compare self-employed health insurance policies now 

Why would I need a self-employed private health insurance policy when we have the NHS? Surely I’d just be wasting my money? 

It’s true that private health insurance is entirely optional in the UK, and we’re incredibly fortunate to have the NHS. But it probably won’t come as a surprise to learn that NHS waiting lists can sometimes be very long, which can in turn result in slower diagnoses, slower treatment and a delayed recovery. 

If you’re self-employed these delays can have a very detrimental impact on your income, which means it may well be worth paying for private health insurance to speed the whole process up. It’s possible you might never need to use your insurance, but at least you’ll have peace of mind that the protection is there if you do suffer an illness. 

Will this type of policy also speed up my waiting time if I have to go to A&E? 

No, if you ever have a medical emergency that requires you to go to A&E your private medical insurance won’t help to reduce the waiting time in this instance. You’ll still get the same NHS medical care at A&E as you would always get, but there’s no way to expedite the triage or treatment process in the emergency room. 

Can I take out self-employed health insurance after I’m diagnosed and then go for treatment privately? 

While it is still possible to opt for private medical treatment after the NHS has diagnosed you with a medical condition, if you didn’t have private health insurance in place before that diagnosis then there’s a good chance you’ll have to pay for any private treatment out of your own pocket. 

The reason is that most health insurance providers will specifically exclude from coverage any medical condition that was diagnosed before you took out the insurance policy. These are known as “pre-existing conditions”, and usually aren’t covered because private health insurance is intended to help policyholders with unexpected and unforeseen medical conditions, rather than shouldering the cost of ailments they already had before taking out insurance. 

What other exclusions are likely to apply with self-employed medical insurance? 

In most cases, chronic illnesses like asthma, allergies, diabetes, Crohn’s disease and colitis will be excluded from coverage, and that will generally be the case even if those conditions are only diagnosed after you take out insurance.

What will be covered? 

Policies will vary from one health insurance provider to the next, but in most cases, your self-employed health insurance should cover things like:  

  • Private outpatient care after a diagnosis 
  • Private inpatient care in a hospital after a diagnosis 
  • Scans after a round of treatment 
  • Tests after a round of treatment 

Comprehensive policies will also cover private diagnosis as well, while less comprehensive policies will require you to have an NHS diagnosis first. 

How much does self-employed private health insurance cost? 

That will depend on a wide range of risk factors, including your age, your location and your medical history.  

Your lifestyle will also be a major factor in the insurance premium calculation – for instance, smokers will pay considerably more for their insurance, as will people who drink to excess. 

The level of coverage you opt for will also influence your premium while opting for a higher excess can bring the premium down a little. 

How can I find cheaper health insurance if I’m self-employed? 

First and foremost, you should use a health insurance comparison site like Quotezone.co.uk to compare self-employed health insurance policies from a range of different providers. 

Agreeing to a higher excess should also reduce your quotes a little, and less comprehensive policies will usually be a bit cheaper than fully comprehensive ones so that’s also an option if you need to reduce the cost. 

Finally, making lifestyle changes (e.g. quitting smoking or reducing your alcohol intake) could result in cheaper premiums in the longer term. 

I’ve heard that if I tell the insurer that I’m not a smoker I’ll get a much cheaper premium, is that true? 

Non-smokers do generally benefit from cheaper health insurance premiums than smokers because smoking is a major risk factor. 

However, if you are in fact a smoker it would be inadvisable to tell the insurance provider that you don’t smoke because this type of misinformation is not only insurance fraud, it can also result in your policy being invalidated. 

What happens if I wasn’t a smoker when taking out the policy, but take up smoking again afterwards? 

If you’ve previously quit smoking and were a non-smoker when you took out your self-employed health insurance policy, but you then begin smoking again after signing up for that insurance, you will be obliged to contact your insurer and let them know about this lifestyle change.  

There’s a good chance your premium will increase when you notify the insurer because smoking is obviously a significant risk factor when it comes to health insurance, but it’s still essential that you let the insurance provider know. 

Will my policy cover my lost income while I’m undergoing private medical treatment? 

No, your self-employed health insurance is only designed to cover your medical expenses, so it won’t cover lost earnings if you’re unable to work while you undergo treatment. 

However, there is another type of policy that you can take out alongside your self-employed health insurance that can cover you for lost earnings – income protection insurance