The Exeter is a provider of Life, Health and Income Protection products and was established in 2008 when The Exeter Friendly Society and The Pioneer Friendly Society merged. The Exeter has roots that can be traced back to 1927 and is one of the UK's largest friendly societies with almost 100,000 members and employing more than 100 staff.
In this article, we review The Exeter's health insurance product Health+, explaining what is included, how much it costs, whether it is worth purchasing and where best to buy it.
How does The Exeter Health+ health insurance work?
Health insurance is an increasingly popular insurance choice for those worried about treatment waiting times on the NHS and who may want more choice as to how and when they are treated. A rise in demand has led to insurers developing increasingly innovative products. While this is great news for consumers it can make the process of comparing health insurance products particularly difficult. There are many considerations when obtaining a health insurance quotation, including the policy excess, type of underwriting, the hospitals you would like access to as well as any other additional benefits that you may wish to bolt on.
To help you understand the product, we break down each of the considerations you'll need to make. Let's start with the core benefits. These are the benefits that you will receive, as standard on all of The Exeter health insurance policies.
The Exeter Health+ health insurance core benefits
|The Exeter Health+ health insurance core cover features||Details||Benefit available|
|Unlimited in-patient and day-patient treatment||Unlimited diagnostics for in-patient or day-patient care. Includes tests and specialists fees as well as any necessary drugs or medical aids. Includes CT, MRI and PET scans||Unlimited|
|Complete cancer cover||Consultation and treatment for diagnosed cancer. Includes chemotherapy, radiotherapy, surgery, stem cell / bone marrow transplant, hormone therapy and ongoing monitoring and support. It does not include standard screenings and preventative treatment||Unlimited|
|Out-patient surgery||Surgical procedures performed by a specialist at any hospital on the selected hospital list||Unlimited|
|Private ambulance||Medically essential travel to, between or from hospitals||Unlimited|
|Home nursing||Home nursing following authorised in-patient and day-patient treatment||Unlimited|
|Parent accommodation||Free hospital stay if your child is receiving treatment under the policy (up to age 18)||Unlimited|
|Post-operative physiotherapy||Physiotherapy as an out-patient following an operation as an in-patient, day-patient or out-patient||
Up to 3 sessions
|NHS cash benefit||Paid if you received free in-patient treatment (including cancer) that would have been covered under your policy||
£150 per night (up to a maximum of 30 nights)
|Free medical advice via the Healthwise app||Access to the Healthwise app where clients can receive second medical opinions, remote GP appointments, mental health support and more||Unlimited|
|Hospice donation||Paid to your hospice if you are admitted for care||£250|
The above benefits are included as standard with The Exeter's Health+ health insurance policy. Read on to find out more about 'add-on' benefits that can be applied to the policy if needed.
The Exeter Health+ health insurance benefit add-ons
Benefit 'add-ons' allow customers to tailor their health insurance policy to their specific needs. Adding extra elements to the policy will make the cover more expensive but it could give you access to specialist treatment or provide an upgrade to the number of diagnostics you would qualify for as part of the standard 'core' cover. We have listed the optional benefit add-ons available on The Exeter Health+ policy below.
|The Exeter Health+ health insurance core features||Details||Benefit available|
|Out-patient care||Diagnostic tests including ECGs, X-rays and pathology tests at any hospital on your selected hospital list. Specialist fees also covered up to the selected limit||Choice of £0, £500, up to £1,000 or unlimited|
|Unlimited out-patient diagnostics||Out-patient diagnostic tests are covered in full and only the specialist consultation fees are deducted from the chosen out-patient benefit limit||Unlimited|
|Therapies||Specialist GP referrals for treatment provided by a physiotherapist, chiropractor, osteopath, acupuncturist, podiatrist, speech therapist, pain clinic or dietician||Choice of up to £500, up to £1,000 or unlimited|
|Mental Health||In-patient, day-patient and out-patient care. Includes specialist fees, diagnostic tests, psychiatric treatment and cognitive behavioural therapy||Unlimited (28 days of in/day patient cover per year)|
Choice of hospitals with The Exeter Health+ health insurance
Once you have decided on whether or not you wish to include benefit add-ons, you'll need to choose where you will be treated and by whom. It costs less if you select Exeter's guided option which means that Exeter will refer you to a specialist but you may have to travel further to reach them although Exeter will try to arrange your consultation and treatment in your location.
You can choose to have access to a list of hospital and consultant choices and if you opt for this way of arranging your private medical treatment then you will be offered a choice of 3 hospital lists. Each hospital list varies to provide you with a choice of lists that can help you to budget the cost of your health cover. The choice is as follows.
|Hospital list||What is included|
|Essential hospitals list||Includes the largest hospitals and NHS private patient units. Those selecting this option may find that they need to travel a little further and could be subject to slightly longer wait times. This is the cheapest of the three hospital list options.|
|Standard hospitals list||Includes all hospitals in the essential hospital list and includes an additional number of independent hospitals and clinics. This is a good option for those who want a little more choice but do want to pay the higher premium associated with the extended hospital list.|
|Extended hospitals list||Includes all hospitals in the essential and standard hospitals list and provides the widest choice available, including a greater number of London hospitals. This is the most expensive option, however it provides the greatest choice of hospitals meaning you are likely to travel less and could get seen quicker.|
Underwriting options with The Exeter Health+ health insurance
The Exeter Health+ health insurance plan provides three types of underwriting. You'll need to make a choice between moratorium, full or existing underwriting and we explain each of those options in the table below.
|Underwriting type||Underwriting explanation|
|Moratorium underwriting||Those wishing to get covered quickly may want to choose moratorium underwriting. This means that The Exeter will only ask a few simple questions and your cover can start straight away. If you ever need to claim The Exeter will write to your doctor to ensure that the condition you are claiming for is not pre-existing. We explain what is considered as a 'pre-existing' condition later in this article.|
|Full medical underwriting||You could choose to be fully medically underwritten. Selecting this option will mean that your application will take longer to process as The Exeter will need to write to your GP and access your medical history by requesting your medical records. Those selecting this option may find that their premiums are slightly cheaper and would benefit from knowing exactly what they are and are not covered for when the policy starts.|
|Existing, continued or transferred underwriting||If you already have an existing health insurance policy and you wish to change providers then you could select this option. This will ensure you keep the same cover for any conditions you have had since the original policy began.|
Excess options with The Exeter Health+ health insurance
Your excess is the amount you choose to pay towards any tests or treatment you receive. The higher the excess you choose, the less you'll pay in premiums. You can choose from 7 different excess options as listed below.
Optional no claims discount with The Exeter Health+ health insurance
Much like car insurance, you can choose to add a no-claims discount option to your health insurance policy with The Exeter. The table below sets out the no-claims discount that is applied each year. The maximum number of years that you can build up a no-claims discount with The Exeter Health+ health insurance is 15 years.
|Number of years with no claims||0||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||10||11||12||13||14||15|
|Discount % applied to renewal quote||0%||9%||18%||25%||32%||39%||45%||50%||54%||59%||63%||66%||70%||72%||74%||75%|
Making a claim will affect your no claims discount and the table below sets out how a claim might impact your no claims discount with The Exeter Health+ health insurance policy.
|Total claim amount prior to your renewal date||Action||Example|
|£0.00||Move up to the next level||If you have not made a claim in the current policy year when it comes to renewal you will achieve the next no claims discount level. For example, if you had 4 years no claims, you would move up to 5 years no claims and get a discount of 39% on your renewal price|
|£0.01 to £300.00||Remain at current level||If you have made claims during the current policy year that total between £0.01 and £300.00 then you would remain at your existing level when it comes to renewal. So, if you had 4 years no claims, you would remain there and receive a discount of 32% on your renewal price|
|£300.01 to £1,000.00||Move down one level||If you had made claims during the current policy year that total between £300.01 and £1,000.00 then you would move down one level when it comes to renewal. So, if you had 4 years of no claims, you would move down to 3 years of no claims and receive a discount of 25% on your renewal price|
|£1,000.01 to £2,000.00||Move down two levels||If you had made claims during the current policy year that total between £1,000.01 and £2,000.00 then you would move down two levels when it comes to renewal. So, if you had 4 years of no claims, you would move down to 2 years of no claims and receive a discount of 18% on your renewal price|
|£2,000.01 and above||Move down three levels||If you had made claims during the current policy year that total over £2,000.00 then you would move down three levels when it comes to renewal. So, if you had 4 years of no claims, you would move down to 1 year of no claims and receive a discount of 9% on your renewal price|
It is worth noting that the following claims do not impact your no-claims discount on The Exeter Health+ health insurance
- NHS cash benefit
- Hospice donations
- Any claim that is lower than your excess amount
What isn't covered on The Exeter Health+ health insurance policy?
It is standard for a health insurance provider to exclude any claims that arise from a pre-existing condition and The Exeter is no different. Some health insurance providers would reject claims from conditions, for which you have sought advice or treatment in the last 5 years. However, The Exeter would only reject claims arising from conditions for which you sought advice or treatment in the last 2 years. The Exeter provides a full list of policy exclusions in its policy document, all of which are standard exclusions that you would expect to get with any other insurance provider. We have provided a summary of some of those exclusions below.
The Exeter Health+ health insurance exclusions summary
- Pre-existing conditions, for which, you have sought advice or treatment in the last 2 years
- Pregnancy and fertility treatment
- Professional sports injuries
- Self-elected treatments
- Renal dialysis
- Treatment overseas
- Preventative tests and procedures
How much does The Exeter Health+ health insurance cost?
We have provided some example costs in the table below based on a healthy 30-year-old living in the South East of England. It is important to remember that the cost of health insurance will depend on a number of factors including your age, where you live and the type of benefits you choose. We have selected a number of benefits in our table in order to provide three quotes that could be defined as basic, intermediate and comprehensive cover. The best way to get an accurate health insurance quotation is to speak to an independent health insurance specialist* and we explain the best way to do that later in this article.
The Exeter Health+ health insurance costs
|Where you can go for treatment||Excess payable when claiming||Out-patient cover||Underwriting||Hospital Choice||Level of therapies cover||Mental health cover||No claims option||Cost^|
|Guided to Exeter choice of specialist||£250||£0||Moratorium||n/a||None||Not included||Yes||£30.22|
|Guided to Exeter choice of specialist||£250||£500||Moratorium||n/a||£500||Included||Yes||£43.25|
|Choose a specific specialist from a list||£250||£500||Moratorium||Extended||£1000||Included||Yes||£72.60|
^Prices based on a healthy, non-smoking person aged 30
Is The Exeter Health+ health insurance worth it?
The Exeter offers a comprehensive health insurance product that is flexible and provides good value for most people. It has a five-star Defaqto rating meaning it sits alongside other well-established providers such as Axa Health, Bupa and Vitality. If you are still in the early stages of understanding how health insurance works and whether health insurance is worth the money, then it may be worth reading our article 'Is private health insurance worth it?'.
Where to buy the best and cheapest Health+ health insurance policy from The Exeter
One of the simplest ways to buy a health insurance policy from The Exeter is via its website. Unlike its life and income protection products - which can only be bought through an insurance broker - customers can buy health insurance from The Exeter directly through its website. That being said, most people would be better off buying a health insurance policy from The Exeter via an independent health insurance specialist as they will be able to guide you through the process and answer any questions you have. Additionally, an independent specialist will have access to every health insurance provider on the market, meaning they can compare health insurance products across the market, ensuring you get the very best deal. To get in touch with one of the UK's leading health insurance specialists simply click on 'Get health insurance quote'* to get started. You can choose to build your own quote or alternatively request that a qualified adviser calls you back at a time that suits you. They offer a comprehensive price-match policy meaning they'll beat any other quote and pay you £50 cash if they can't.
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