freephone 0800 862 0373
Sign in to view your quotes
Email address:
Password or PIN:

Forgotten your password? Reset it here.

Increase in self-pay private patients as NHS rations treatments

Published on 25/09/2012

GPs believe the number of patients asking about paying privately for operations has increased in the last year, as the NHS continues to budget cut.

A poll carried out by ComRes for BMI Healthcare, reported in the Daily Telegraph, found that 70 per cent of GPs are unable to refer a patient for further treatment on the NHS at least once a month because they do not qualify under strict local criteria.

According to the newspaper, primary care trusts have been restricting access to treatments like cataract removals, hernia operations and hip and knee replacements by raising the threshold of how ill a patient has to be.

Consequently, 35 per cent of questioned GPs now believe that the proportion of patients who asked about paying for private treatment had increased compared to a year ago. Only six per cent thought the proportion had decreased.

66 per cent of GPs thought the increased interest in self-pay healthcare was due to the lack of availability of treatments on the NHS, and 56 per cent thought it was because NHS waiting times had increased. Dr Mark Ferreira, medical development director of BMI Healthcare, said:

“As this survey shows, patients are being forced to consider how they will be treated and how they will pay for their healthcare.”

Dr Natalie-Jane Macdonald, managing director of Bupa Health and Wellbeing, said the company was seeing increased demand for its new self-payment product called Bupa On Demand. This offers private treatment packages at a fixed price for people without health insurance or who are excluded from certain treatments on their current plan.

Cataract surgery is being offered by Bupa On Demand for £2,505 per eye, hysterectomies for £5,300 and hip replacements for £10,505.

Another option for people wanting access to private treatment who cannot afford to meet these one-off costs is to take out a health insurance policy. This could cover you for quick referrals and treatment in a private hospital for a variety of conditions, at a more affordable monthly premium.

© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2012

Categories:  Health InsuranceNHS and Hospitals
Increase in self-pay private patients as NHS rations treatmentsGPs believe the number of patients asking about paying privately for operations has increased in the last year, as the NHS continues to budg    tweet it on twittershare with your friends on Facebookshare with your friends on MySpaceBlog it on your LinkedIn profile

No.1 health insurance broker as rated by customers

A great service from the initial call, to finalising the agreement. I would highly recommend to my family and friends.

Review centre member

Proactive, efficient, and offered me insurance I need. I would say half price I would end up paying if I did it by myself. Many thanks.

Review centre member

Excellent service. Explained everything in detail and really helped to find the right insurance best suited to my needs - which wasn't necessarily the most expensive. 

Review centre member

Good value and the advisor was very helpful and recommended the best policy for my grandson. I would definitely use this service again and recommend to others.

Review centre member

We were contacted in good time to make a knowledgable choice. We were given plenty of options with lots of information to enable us to make the right choice.

Review centre member

The service I received was excellent, the staff member was very efficient and knowledgable. She went out of her way to get the best policy for me.

Review centre member

Great service. I really appreciated the help provided by Active Quote to arrange health insurance. The agent was very informative and proactive. Many thanks!

Review centre member

I received excellent care and attention from the first phone call till the last. Friendly, efficient and patient.

Review centre member

Staff are very helpful, friendly and polite. They call back when they say they will and keep you up to date with progress. Pleasure to deal with.

Review centre member

Very polite and friendly, and gave detailed explanations of all aspects of the cover. Reassuring to know that if you do have a problem there is someone you can contact.

Review centre member
This site is operated by Insurance Broker ActiveQuote Ltd registered in England & Wales company number 6765845.
Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Firm reference number 501109 as detailed on the Financial Services Register. Please read our Key Facts document.
For information about your rights as a consumer visit Citizens Advice.

Our insurance comparison service is free and easy for you to use, but you are responsible for making sure all your information is entered correctly, and for choosing your insurer.

This site uses cookies in order to work correctly - these are not harmful and do not contain personal information. By using this site you consent to this. I understand  Tell me more

please wait ...