Fair Investment: Private healthcare beckons as NHS bugs Brits

31 October 2007 / by None
Inquiries for private medical insurance more than doubled in September compared with the previous month, according to new research from Fair Investment Company.

Increasingly frequent reports of poor treatment, superbugs and long waiting lists on the NHS appear to be pushing people toward private health care, and some are even looking for treatment abroad as a more time- and cost-effective alternative.

“With the spread of infection hitting the headlines and reports of incompetence causing concern across the UK, more and more people feel private healthcare is the only viable option,” says Fair Investment director, James Caldwell.

The company’s research reveals that 53 per cent more people were interested in acquiring private healthcare in September compared with August figures. In terms of the proportion of total inquiries received on the company’s website, September’s figure was 37.5 per cent higher than in the previous month.

Approximately 70,000 Brits are expected to travel abroad in search of medical care this year, with India topping the list of popular destinations for surgery. And, as a result of the current shortage of dentists in the UK, many people are also travelling abroad for dental treatment, with Hungary proving the most attractive location.

This is unsurprising according to UK website Treatment Abroad, which reports that Brits have used 112 foreign hospitals, based in 48 countries for treatment. It points out that, in addition to the benefits of shorter waiting lists and cheaper treatment, patients can also take advantage of the time away as part of their trip abroad.

However, Mr Caldwell says: “Although travelling abroad may appeal to some, there are many private medical care providers to be found in the UK. Private care generally ensures patients can be seen without the long wait at a hospital near their own home.”

“For those looking for private healthcare, cheapest is not necessarily best, so it is important to get impartial advice on what is right for you,” he adds.

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