What Is Excess in Health Insurance?

Discover what excess means in health insurance and when it’s a good idea to add it to your policy.

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What Does Excess Mean in Health Insurance?

Most people who take out private health insurance are keen to explore ways they can save money, and excess is one method of lowering your premium. This means agreeing to pay a certain amount towards your medical bills, usually ranging from £0–£5,000 depending on the insurer and policy.

Instead of traditional excess, providers like WPA offer something called ‘shared responsibility’, where you agree to pay a percentage (typically 25%) of any claim, up to a maximum annual figure.

For Example: 

David’s policy starts on the 1st of January every year, and he has a shared responsibility of £500 with a 25% agreement. In February, he sees a consultant who charges £750 for an ultrasound and two consultations. As a result, David has to pay £187.50 — 25% of the £750 bill. That means if a second claim arises later that policy year, he will be charged a further £312.50.

How Does it Work?
Health Insurance Excess Explained

You have the option to add excess to any medical insurance policy you choose. However, it’s important that you are able to cover the cost if you need to make a claim.

The cost of the treatment you receive under your private health insurance policy will be split between you and your insurer, with whom you will pay your excess, plus anything exceeding the cover limit of your policy.

You may be required to pay health insurance excess on every claim you make, or only on the first claim in each policy year. This information can be found under the terms and conditions of your policy.

Private Health Insurance Key Terms

We are here to help you understand the main concepts you’ll come
across in your private health insurance policy.

Why Switch Your
Private Health Insurance Provider?

Even if you already have private health insurance, there are many reasons why you should consider changing your provider:

By switching provider, you can:

* Findings are based on 49 clients, over the last 3 months who already had a live policy in place.

Health Insurance Excess FAQ's

No, you don’t need to have any excess on your policy. This may increase your monthly premium, but you won’t be required to pay anything when you make a claim.

Remember that you will have to pay this excess if you make a claim, so it’s crucial to work out what you can afford to pay. For this reason, it’s not advisable to choose a very high amount of excess solely for the sake of reducing your premium. Our advisors here at Healthcare Clarity can help you calculate a reasonable and realistic figure, so contact the team to discuss your situation.

You are usually able to add excess to your health insurance plan at the point of renewal if you want to cut costs. For example, if your premium has gone up, adding an excess of as little as £200 can potentially reduce your policy by up to 10%. Some insurers may also allow you to add health insurance excess mid-term.

However, don’t rush to make this change to your policy. If you want to decrease your monthly premium, let us review your current policy to see if there is an alternative before putting an excess on your plan. Get in touch with Healthcare Clarity now, and one of our expert advisors can talk you through the best course of action.

Private Health Insurance Cover Options