The Scottish Mail on Sunday
Seven steps to reducing the costs of healthcare
1 ADD an excess. By adding or increasing a contribution to any claim, premiums can fall by 20 per cent or more. Other options include shared responsibility plans where you pay a percentage of any claim, up to a limit.
CONSIDER self-funding for smaller claims. This can prevent premiums being hiked later and protect any no claims discounts.
CHOOSE a ‘six-week
option’ plan. This reduces a premium by up to 25 per cent but will provide immediate treatment if it is not available on the NHS within six weeks.
REMOVE noncore options such as therapy, outpatient benefits or international cover. Find out what help you can get from your local NHS and then exclude this from cover.
LOOK at friendly society style plans, such as those from WPA, Exeter and CS Healthcare.
They may be more expensive at the start but offer some premium stability as they do not rise due to claims experience – although they do rise with age.
IF married and only one of you has pre-existing conditions, look at separate providers.
CHECK affinity groups. Some offer premium discounts to groups such as farmers or civil servants – though these are starting to disappear for older members.