As waiting lists increase, and service standards fall, extra insurance is worth considering… carefully… fearfully

Update July 18th 2014 – Chris Smyth July 17th reports in The Times: One in 20 on an NHS waiting list

An opportunity for extra cover? At first glance it seems all diabetics and those with Ischaemic Heart Disease, especially those living in areas with longest waiting lists, should apply. The risks of adverse selection don’t seem to bother Benendon Health. What’s the catch? It appears to exclude most of what I am afraid of getting… As a GP I was worried that many Benenden claims would not be met… Remember that there are perverse incentives in every system.. In the end, as th Regional Health Services deteriorate, there seems little option than the return of “fear”..

Benendon offers a list of what it does not cover:

  • Emergency care
  • Heart surgery
  • Cancer treatment
  • Surgery for arterial, cardiac, neurological or complex orthopaedic problems or Bariatric surgery. However, benenden health members can receive 25% off hip and knee replacements at the benenden Hospital
  • Cosmetic, breast, plastic, sterilisation, nerve, dental or maxillofacial surgery, or surgery for transplants
  • Diagnostic consultations with consultants who do not have an NHS post and are not registered with a royal college such as the Royal College of Surgeons or Physicians
  • Appointments with specialists such as radiologists, dentists, opticians or complementary therapists and pain management specialists
  • Retrospective services, where our written authorisation hasn’t been sought
  • Consultations, tests and treatments outside the UK
  • Services which are delivered by non-UK, non-VAT registered organisations
  • We are unable to support ongoing monitoring, follow-up consultations or treatment for the same medical condition. You should seek support through the NHS

You can compare private health cover (Private medical insurance: which one to choose by Naomi Coleman, Mail Online 29th June 2014), and get a quote, and tmy favourite options for private cover include:


Western Provident:




A more comprehensive list includes:




This entry was posted in Stories in the Media on by .

About Roger Burns - retired GP

I am a retired GP and medical educator. I have supported patient participation throughout my career, and my practice, St Thomas; Surgery, has had a longstanding and active Patient Participation Group (PPG). I support the idea of Community Health Councils, although I feel they should be funded at arms length from government. I have taught GP trainees for 30 years, and been a Programme Director for GP training in Pembrokeshire 20 years. I served on the Pembrokeshire LHG and LHB for a total of 10 years. I completed an MBA in 1996, and I along with most others, never had an exit interview from any job in the NHS! I completed an MBA in 1996, and was a runner up for the Adam Smith prize for economy and efficiency in government in that year. This was owing to a suggestion (St Thomas' Mutual) that practices had incentives for saving by being allowed to buy rationed out services in the following year.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s