Corporate health insurance

Investing in private medical insurance for your employees keeps your people healthy and your business thriving.

What is corporate health insurance?

Corporate health insurance, sometimes known as group health insurance, gives your employees access to private healthcare treatment options in the UK.

Benefits of corporate health insurance

When employers offer private healthcare to their people, everybody wins. The company and its employees all reap the rewards.

Employee benefits

  • Improved healthcare - Private medical insurance plans give employees access to treatments not always available on the NHS, with their choice of doctor and hospital.
  • Faster treatment - Your employees can bypass long NHS waiting lists with private healthcare.
  • Flexibility - Private healthcare allows workers to choose their appointment times, including evenings and weekends.
  • Mental health - Many group health insurance policies give employees access to mental health support.
  • Wellbeing benefits - Many plans also offer wellbeing benefits and rewards that make the company a healthier, happier place to work

Employer benefits

  • Reduce staff churn - Private healthcare is regarded as one of the top employee benefits and helps boost staff retention rates.
  • Boost your employer brand - Offering a health insurance plan to your team lets the world know you're a great employer.
  • Healthier employees - When your employees are healthy, they take fewer sick days, keeping your business firing on all cylinders.
  • Flexible appointments - With private medical insurance, your employees can visit the doctor outside of working hours.

How does group health insurance work?

This is how a typical group scheme is set up and runs:



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Pay premiums monthly or annually to your insurer.

Make a claim

If any of your employees needs treatment, they call the insurers directly.

Get better

Your employees get treated and return to work as soon as possible.

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What does group health insurance cover?

The range of treatments covered by group private medical insurance depends on the insurance company you use and how much you pay in premiums.

The most significant difference between entry-level and more wide-ranging policies is whether they include outpatient cover and diagnostic tests.

Basic policies

The vast majority of business medical insurance plans will offer you and your company employees services, including:

  • Acute conditions - covers treatment for sudden illnesses and injuries.
  • Inpatient care - If your employees require private hospital treatment, your insurance policy will cover the cost.
  • 24/7 access - including digital GP services.
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Comprehensive policies

When you choose a higher level of health cover for your employees, you unlock a wide range of other services, including:

  • Extensive cancer cover - Your employees can access treatment if they are diagnosed with cancer, including chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
  • Outpatient cover - If your employees don't require a stay in hospital (for example, for minor surgery), your health insurance policy may cover your day-patient treatment.
  • Diagnostic tests - Including MRI, CT scans, X-rays and psychological assessments - Including MRI, CT scans, X-rays and psychological assessments
  • Mental health support - Most comprehensive policies offer treatment for mental health problems alongside ongoing support for wellbeing. - Most comprehensive policies offer treatment for mental health problems alongside ongoing support for wellbeing.
  • Musculoskeletal conditions - Some policies cover treatment for back, neck, muscle and joint pain
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Additional cover options

Most group health insurance providers offer flexible plans with optional extras so that you can give your valued employees even more comprehensive cover. These other benefits may include:

  • Mental health cover - As well as access to a mental health helpline, you can also add treatment from a psychiatrist or psychologist if necessary.
  • Alternative therapies - E.g. chiropractor, acupuncture.
  • Dental and optical cover - Your group health insurance could also contribute to check-ups with the dentist or optician.
  • Family cover - Employees can also opt to cover their immediate family for private healthcare.
  • Services from a GP referral - If your GP recommends you see a specialist for treatment or diagnostic tests, it can be covered by your health insurance.
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What's excluded?

All group health insurance policies will exclude certain conditions from cover. Standard exclusions include:

  • Chronic conditions - Long-term illnesses you cannot recover from are not covered by business health insurance—for example, diabetes and epilepsy.
  • Drug and alcohol misuse - Health insurance does not cover illnesses or injuries that result from addiction.
  • Self-inflicted injuries - If you injure yourself doing something of your choosing, such as participating in a dangerous sport, your health insurance will not cover your treatment.

We keep things simple with straightforward, honest advice.

Insurance can be complicated at times, so our priority is to keep things simple and give you the facts you need to make a decision. We don’t rush or push clients in a given direction - it’s vital you come away feeling confident in your choice.

Louis Vafa, Senior Broker
Louis Vafa - Senior Broker at Globacare

Supporting better mental health in the workplace

It makes sense for companies to look after their employees' mental health. Not everyone can deal with the pressures of life and work, but when workers struggle mentally, they can't perform at their best. As a result, many businesses formulate strategies to create a workplace centred around mental wellbeing.

Mental health add on options

Group health insurance can be a central part of your strategy. Depending on your provider and policy, you can add a wide range of mental health services, including:

  • No need for a GP referral - See a mental health specialist directly
  • Support for companies on how to create a workplace that supports mental health
  • End-to-end services, including clinical treatment

Leading providers of group health insurance

The UK's four major insurance companies offer business health insurance so you can deliver more benefits for your employees. Let's look at each of them in turn:

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Aviva logo


Aviva's corporate healthcare product is aimed at large businesses with 250 or more employees. It aims to be as flexible as possible for companies, allowing you to pick and choose what is covered to suit your business needs. Aviva also offers other benefits to help your employees stay healthy.

Depending on your level of cover, you can get:

  • Cancer cover
  • End-to-end mental health treatment
  • Cover for diagnostic tests
Bupa Logo


Bupa's corporate health insurance is available for companies with 250+ employees. There are two private medical insurance plans: Bupa Balance and Bupa Select. Balance aims to provide access to core private healthcare services, while Select offers a variety of cover options.

With Bupa Select, your employees can get the following:

  • Paid-for consultations, treatments and diagnostic tests
  • Cancer cover
  • Musculoskeletal services and more
Axa PPP logo

AXA Health

When you get business health insurance from AXA Health, you don't just get private healthcare; you get a healthcare solution built around your business.

AXA Health's product, called Advance, offers benefits including:

  • Mental health support
  • Musculoskeletal diagnosis
  • Cancer cover and care

Employees also have access to a Wellbeing Hub to help them make healthier lifestyle choices.

Vitality logo


Vitality offers group health insurance to companies with 100 or more employees. But it's more than an insurance policy; it's an integrated wellness programme that aligns with your business strategy.

Benefits available include:

  • Mental health support 24/7
  • £100 per year for private prescriptions
  • Cancer care from diagnosis to treatment

As with many Vitality products, you and your employees can earn rewards when you make healthy lifestyle choices. Rewards include discounts on Apple watches and Peloton bikes, cinema tickets and gym memberships.

What affects the cost of corporate health insurance?

The cost of group health insurance depends on several factors, including:

  • The number of employees you want to cover
  • Employee ages - The older your employees, the higher your premiums will be
  • Cover level - The more benefits and add-ons on your plan, the higher your premiums
  • Claims history - If you regularly claim on your corporate health insurance policy, your renewal price will be higher in the future
  • Location - Insurers may charge employers higher premiums if they're located in areas where private health is more expensive (e.g. London)
  • Outpatient cover - Adding outpatient cover is excellent for your employees, but it does mean higher premiums.
  • Medical underwriting - Employers pay higher or lower premiums depending on how the medical underwriting works on their policy.
Business woman with handbag on streets of city.

How does group health insurance differ from small business health insurance?

The most significant difference between health insurance for large businesses and small business health insurance concerns medical underwriting.

Larger companies can have 'Medical History Disregarded' underwriting, which covers employees' pre-existing conditions. It's the most comprehensive type of health insurance underwriting. However, it is not available to small businesses.

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Underwriting options

The underwriting option you choose for your business health insurance can significantly affect your premiums. There are four main methods of medical underwriting in health insurance. They are:

Fully medical underwriting

This type of underwriting does not cover pre-existing conditions. When you take out a fully underwritten insurance policy, your employees must disclose their entire medical history on a questionnaire.


With moratorium underwriting, employees do not need to disclose their medical history or pre-existing conditions. If you make a claim, your insurance company will look at your medical history before they allow you to get treatment. However, if you had a pre-existing condition five years before you took out the policy, it will not be covered unless you had been free of symptoms (and medication) for two years after your cover began.

Medical history disregarded

This underwriting covers all pre-existing conditions with no questions asked. Employees do not have to disclose their medical situation when they take out the policy. It's the most comprehensive type of cover and is only available to larger employers.

Policies that cover employees' pre-existing conditions will be more expensive, as they represent a greater risk and are more likely to make claims.

Compare the UK's leading corporate health insurers

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