What is a Health Cash Plan?
An inexpensive insurance policy that provides cover for the cost of everyday healthcare, such as routine check-ups and protection against unexpected costs such as specialist consultations, diagnostic tests, hospital stays and therapy for minor injuries and ailments.
Generally, the premium is fixed at the same level for all policyholders, regardless of their age or the number of claims that they make, and there is no need for a medical examination. Children under 18 are usually covered for free.
There is usually a fixed annual limit for claiming in each benefit category (e.g. Optical, Dental, etc.) and you can claim as often as you need to until you have reached your limit. Claims are made after the customer has paid for the treatment or service, and are usually reimbursed within less than a week.
Health cash plans cover an extensive range of treatments; the most common ones are:
- Dentist: Both check-ups and dental treatments, including seeing the hygienist
- Optician: Eye tests and prescription glasses or (often) contact lenses
- Chiropody: Foot treatment and advice
- Physiotherapy: Sometimes coupled with osteopathy
- Mental health: awareness and support
- Maternity payments: Cash, paid when a child is born
- Complementary health: Osteopathy, chiropractic, homeopathy and acupuncture by a registered practitioner
- Hospital in-patient: Cash paid for each night spent in hospital
- Hospital parental stay: Cash paid when a parent spends the night in hospital with an ill child.
- Special consultation: Repayment of fees paid towards a consultant physician or surgeon.
- Personal accident, death and funeral benefits: Cash paid out in the event of accident or death.
- NHS prescriptions: Some policies pay back on the cost of a limited number of prescriptions.
- Health screening: the policy may pay for an annual health screening.
- Others: Surgical or hearing aids, redundancy payouts, day surgery, recuperation grants, occupational therapy, diet advice, paternity grants, adoption grants, infertility grants. Many providers also have helplines for a range of subjects.