When is your policy renewal due?
Most health insurance policies automatically renew without needing to do anything, so you might only have a rough idea about your renewal date. However, if you haven't reviewed your health insurance policy since you took it out a few years ago, it's worth checking to see if it still meets your needs. Your premium is likely to have increased, and we each have changing healthcare needs as the years pass. Your circumstances may have also changed, so you need to add your children or other family members to your policy. When you review your health insurance, you can ensure that your health insurance coverage meets your needs and works with your budget.
Your health insurer will contact you about 30 days before your renewal date with coverage details and confirmation of your premium. This allows you to review your health insurance cover and make changes if necessary.
Why is it a good idea to review your health insurance policy?
Reviewing your health insurance every so often allows you to check whether you need to make changes to the cover you have with your current insurer, for example, switching to a new policy or changing your level of coverage, or whether you'd get a better deal elsewhere. The Financial Conduct Authority, which regulates all financial services providers, recommends that you review your health insurance every year.
Here are a few more good reasons to review your health insurance.
It could save you money
The cost of your health insurance policy is based on various factors, including your age, medical history, the type of work you do and the health coverage you choose. Your insurance company uses this information to consider the likelihood that you'll make a claim. Health insurance providers have different approaches to offering health cover and the way that they assess risk. This means that while your existing insurers may regard you as higher risk, other insurers may not and will offer you the same level of coverage at a lower premium.
You could improve your coverage
You might review your health insurance to try and save money and find that you can improve your coverage simultaneously. For example, health insurance plans vary in what they offer as part of their core coverage, so you may find that you can get additional treatment types or therapies which your existing plan only provides with add-on cover. Equally, you could increase the financial limit or the number of treatment sessions you receive whilst paying a lower premium.
Of course, if your circumstances have changed, you should ensure adequate health insurance cover for the future. For example, you may want to add your partner or children to your policy as your responsibilities increase. Reviewing your current health plan can give you peace of mind knowing that you have the best coverage you can afford, even if your premiums stay the same. This lets you stay ahead of a changing lifestyle and any health issues that may arise as you get older.
You can be confident that you're getting the best deal
A health insurance review doesn't always lead to a change in your health insurance provider. There is fierce competition across the health insurance sector to provide competitive coverage and a positive customer experience to clients. As a result, they regularly introduce new insurance products and services to stay competitive.
Reviewing your health insurance plan lets you compare your existing health coverage to other policies. You may find a dramatic difference between your current health insurance plan and the new health plans your review reveals. Alternatively, your review could show that you won't be able to lower your health insurance premium or improve your coverage significantly. On the other hand, if you're happy with your existing provider's service, you may decide to stay put, knowing that you've got the best deal for you.
How the renewal process works
Each insurer has its own approach to renewals. However, you can expect them to contact you around 30 days before your renewal is due to provide a quote or ask you to get in touch. If they ask you to contact them, they'll discuss your renewal with you before giving you a quote. This allows you to make changes to your plan, such as adding more coverage or changing your policy excess.
You can expect your quote to have increased as age is a significant factor in your insurers' risk assessment. This is because you're more likely to claim medical costs or experience critical illnesses as you age. Your premium will increase more if you've made a claim. Other factors will also influence any cost increase; some will affect the whole insurance industry, and others may depend on your insurance provider, so it's essential to review your health insurance plan regularly.
If you've spoken to a health insurance broker before your renewal quote arrives, you'll be able to decide whether you want to renew with your current insurers or switch to a new one.
Protecting yourself when you switch
Switching to a new health insurance plan can be easy, particularly if you don't have any pre-existing diseases or have yet to claim on your policy. However, if you have, it's vital to protect yourself so that you don't lose critical coverage when you change to a new health plan. There are two ways to do this, depending on your circumstances.
Avoiding additional exclusions
Your existing health policy will have specific exclusions meaning that any pre-existing diseases aren't covered. When you switch to a new policy, they'll add further exclusions if you've made a claim. This could mean you lose coverage during a course of treatment if you switch. However, continued personal medical exemption (CMPE) underwriting can allow you to make the change without losing coverage.
Protecting any moratorium period you've earned
If you have medical exclusions on your health insurance plan, there's a two-year moratorium at the start of your policy cover. If you stay symptom-free during that time, your insurer could remove the exclusion. However, if you're a year into your two-year moratorium period and switch insurers, the clock will start running again unless you opt for continued moratorium underwriting. This lets you transfer your existing moratorium in the same way as the no-claim bonus on your car insurance.
How we can help
At Globacare, we offer a free review service to compare health policies across the market and provide expert advice tailored to your circumstances. We'll help you to maintain or improve your level of cover and protect your moratorium and medical history. We typically reduce our customers' premiums by 32%. Get in touch to speak to our specialist brokers for a comparison quote.