Universal healthcare has been in effect in the United Kingdom since 1948. The system has been met with widespread popularity, even garnering a lavish mention in the 2012 Olympic opening ceremonies in London. However, though the system is popular, it is not perfect. Private health insurance can provide the additional coverage that fills the gaps that people often encounter.
The National Health Service
The National Health Service of the UK is a system of universal coverage in which all citizens participate. It is paid for through general taxation. Basic coverage includes doctor visits to general practitioners that provide their services without cost at the time of service. Specialists work through the hospital system. Both categories of physicians get a base salary, which some physicians supplement by working with the private health insurance system. Some additional services are included, such as dental care, mental health care and physical therapy. The individual countries may offer additional medical services through private insurance, employees or paid for by the patient. However, residents of all countries are covered under the basic system. The system often requires people to wait to get treatment for non-emergency treatment.
Private Health Insurance in Britain
Private health insurance in Britain is generally paid for by the individual or offered as a benefit by the employer. It allows the person to use the services of medical specialists without waiting for clearance through the general practitioner, which is the standard practice within the National Health System. Those with private insurance can avoid the long waits for procedures and surgery that are common in the UK.
Benefits of Private Health Insurance Policies
Clearly, private health insurance can assist patients who need to get immediate care from medical specialist without the traditional waiting times. If you need scans to determine your condition, you can get them immediately, without waiting in line. Private insurance can be used to cover drugs, equipment and treatments not covered under the basic National Health system. You will be able to choose a specific doctor or hospital for your treatment. You can also have a private room with private health insurance coverage. Physiotherapy treatments can begin as soon as you require them. For people who are particularly in need of healthcare services that can be delivered immediately, private insurance offers many advantages.