ABI publishes new Private Medical Insurance guidelines

05 October 2007
A new set of private medical insurance (PMI) guidelines which hope to dispel customer confusion and provide more clarity for those seeking treatment, have been published by the ABI (Association of British Insurers).

The updated version includes the definitions of medical terms used in all private medical insurance (PMI) policy documents and information, and has also included a new section that introduces guidelines to explain PMI cover for cancer.

Following a detailed consultation with relevant groups within the medical insurance industry as well as the charity Cancerbackup, the revised definitions will help ensure that PMI customers are able to understand what policies do and do not cover enabling them to compare the products of different companies more easily.

ABI also hopes that those considering taking out PMI will be able to make better informed decisions about the kind of cover they want as well understanding the treatments which would be covered in the event of a cancer diagnosis.

Nick Starling, ABI’s Director of General Insurance and Health, comments: “PMI provides valuable cover for around six million adults and children in the UK. It enables them to that they can get the treatment they need when and where they want it, and it also helps to free up NHS resources.

“The ABI has been working with member companies, and organisations such as Cancerbackup, to create clearer definitions of medical terms. And for the first time, companies will be required to provide a more detailed explanation of their cancer cover. This is because cancer is a complex disease that does not always fit into the standard categories of ‘acute’ or ‘chronic’ illnesses. We hope that the new definitions will improve people’s understanding of PMI and encourage more people to take it out.”

Joanne Rule, Chief Executive of Cancerbackup, adds: “We welcome these important guidelines. They are a result of a long campaign by Cancerbackup and a strong industry response through the ABI.”

Find out more about Private Medical Insurance