Taking out company health insurance allows your employees to access high-quality private healthcare when they need it. In addition, a business health insurance policy will typically cost less per head than individual private health insurance as insurance companies can spread the risk that someone will make a claim over a larger group of people.
Group health insurance policies are available to businesses with two or more employees, and there are different levels of insurance policy to cater to the needs of companies of various sizes.
What can private health insurance cover?
Health insurance can provide access to different types of private healthcare, with each policy including core coverage and optional extras that you can opt to include depending on your needs and budget. For example, inpatient care is always included as standard, whilst you'll typically need to pay extra for outpatient cover. In addition, every insurer offers some form of mental health coverage, although this varies depending on your chosen policy.
It's important to remember that health insurance will only cover acute conditions that can be resolved with a single course of treatment. Chronic conditions such as asthma, diabetes or angina aren't covered as your GP can monitor them.
What isn't covered?
Every health insurance policy has standard exclusions, which typically include care during a normal pregnancy and childbirth, cosmetic surgery and treatment for addiction.
There will also be exclusions based on your employees' medical history. For example, pre-existing medical conditions that have required medical advice or treatment in the past five years are excluded for the first two years of the policy. However, larger businesses may be able to opt for 'medical history disregarded' underwriting, which will cover private healthcare for pre-existing medical conditions.
What does an insurance broker do?
If you're looking for private health insurance, you might think it's more straightforward to go to insurance companies directly rather than adding an intermediary to the process. However, a broker has in-depth knowledge of the UK health insurance market, so they can give you an overview of the health insurance policies that will meet your needs. Whilst an insurance company will try to convince you of the benefits of their service, a broker is on your side and will give you unbiased advice.
Whilst you might get the coverage you need from one of the leading health insurers, a broker is also familiar with the smaller health insurance providers who may offer private health insurance policies that are better suited to your needs.
How does the process work?
When you contact a broker to discuss private health insurance, they'll ask for details about the size of your business, the work you do, and your employees. They'll also want to know what your budget is.
They'll then obtain quotes for insurance policies that fit your budget and offer benefits and services that can support your business and become a valuable part of your employee benefits package.
When they've received the quotes, they'll contact you to discuss each quote and help you to understand the pros and cons so you can make an informed decision. Then, when you've chosen a policy, they'll deal with the paperwork to put your cover in place.
They'll also be available to help you if you or one of your employees needs to make a claim.
Are there different types of brokers?
Some brokers offer advice on various types of policies, from motor and home insurance to life cover and health insurance. Others, such as Globacare, specialise in particular kinds of cover. We focus on life cover and private health insurance policies so we can show up as health insurance specialists who'll give you independent advice to help you get the private health cover you need.
It's also worth checking that you're talking to a broker, not an agent. A broker can offer insurance from providers across the health insurance market, while an agent is tied to offering products from one insurer.
The main benefits of working with a business health insurance broker
1. A broker will save you time
When you work with a broker, you'll be able to supply your business details once then they'll obtain quotes on your behalf. However, if you opt to get your own quotes, you'll need to contact each insurance provider separately, which can be very time-consuming.
2. They'll obtain quotes that meet your business needs
The right health insurance cover for your business will depend on a range of factors, including your business size, budget and employee profile. In addition, private medical insurance has different types of underwriting, which can impact your insurance costs and the claims process.
Each health insurance policy has core coverage and optional extras that vary between insurers. A broker can consider your needs and conduct a full market review to get quotes that ensure your health insurance covers what you need.
3. You'll have expert advice to help you compare quotes
Health insurance quotes typically contain a lot of jargon, making it difficult for you to understand precisely what's covered. A broker will talk you through the features of each private medical insurance policy and what you're getting for your money.
They'll ensure that you understand the pros and cons of each health insurance policy so that you can make an informed choice.
4. A business health insurance broker will help you review your policy when it's up for renewal
Like other types of insurance, your health insurance policy will come up for renewal each year, allowing you to switch to a new policy or a different provider if you need to. Health insurance brokers can help with this process by reviewing your current private medical insurance policy to ensure it still offers the coverage you need and obtaining comparison quotes if required.
Switching policies can also involve looking at different types of underwriting; your broker can guide you through this.
5. Potential cost savings
Brokers get paid by earning commission from insurance providers, so their service is free to you. They can also help you to save money.
A broker will develop relationships with a wide range of insurers, so they can often negotiate a better deal for you than you'd be able to access on your own. This can mean that you'll get lower premiums or improved cover.
6. Knowledge of the UK health insurance market
The UK health insurance market provides a wide range of different health insurance options. Insurance brokers use their knowledge of the products available to tailor the quotes you receive to suit your needs. This can include tailoring the optional extras on your policy to suit your employees. Insurers also offer different benefits and incentives to policyholders, which can help your employees save money and make your health insurance a valuable part of your employee benefits package.
A broker will also consider that small and medium-sized enterprises will be very different from those of a large corporation. A corporate health insurance policy will typically offer services such as occupational health support so your broker can advise on policies which offer support that will benefit your business.
7. You'll have one point of contact
If you contact a lot of health insurance companies directly, you'll also have to deal with each follow-up individually. A broker gives you a single point of contact to discuss your options, and they'll also straightforwardly answer questions.
8. Help with the claims process
We provide our customers with ongoing support, so you and your employees can contact us if you need to make a claim. The claims process can sometimes be stressful, and having your broker's personal service can help make the whole experience easier.
What to look for in an insurance broker
A good broker will offer excellent customer service and ensure you get the right medical insurance for your employees. Here are a few things we think you need to look out for when choosing a broker.
Easy to contact
A broker should make your life less stressful, but that will only happen if they're easy to get hold of. Look for a broker you can pick up the phone and speak to easily or who calls you back or answers emails promptly.
When you speak to your broker, do they provide clear guidance about the information they need or what's included in each quote? If you feel you're being bombarded with jargon, you won't be able to make an informed choice about your health insurance.
Experts in their field
Do your brokers specialise in health insurance? Look at their website to see what it says about their experience and expertise. Our brokers have years of experience between them; we talk about them on our website, so you know who you'll be talking to when you contact us.
The Financial Conduct Authority regulates financial services providers throughout the UK. They ensure that your broker treats you fairly and provides you with impartial advice on the right insurance policy for you. An authorised FCA broker gives you the confidence to know that your interests are protected.
Health insurance brokers who put your needs first
When you talk to a broker, ask yourself whether they're listening to your business needs and preferences or whether you feel as if they're going through the motions. Your business health insurance broker should offer you a bespoke service that gives you the right coverage. They probably aren't putting your needs first if you don't feel you're being listened to.
There are several independent review sites where you can find information about the broker you're considering working with. It's a good idea to check a broker's website to see if their reviews are easily accessible; if you need to dig, this might not be a good sign. Working Feedback collects reviews on our behalf and you can read them here.
Get in touch
We provide a personal service to help you find the right private medical insurance for your employees. Get in touch with us for a comparison quote.
Frequently asked questions
What do health insurance brokers do?
A broker will take details about your business and your health insurance needs before contacting a range of health insurance companies to obtain policy quotes. They'll use their knowledge of UK insurance providers to help you find the right policy.
How do brokers get paid?
Brokers are paid on commission by insurers when you take out a policy. That means you don't have to pay a fee to use a broker, and you may get a better deal on your health insurance.
Will a broker help me to compare quotes?
Yes. They'll ensure that you understand the pros and cons of each policy and explain any jargon so you can make an informed choice.
Would a broker be able to help me with a claim?
Yes. A good broker will provide ongoing support, including carrying out an annual review of your policy and helping you and your employees to make a claim should the need arise.