Best Private Health Insurance for Over 65s

Access the best healthcare services and prolong your life.

Updated: May 18, 2024
Matt Crabtree

Written By

Matt Crabtree

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Access to healthcare is critical in your later years. Choosing excellent healthcare can help prolong your life and ensure you enjoy special moments with your children and loved ones.

The National Health Service is not the only option available if you are looking for the best healthcare. Private health insurance can give you access to various services and has many additional benefits.

Have you been searching for the best private health insurance options for over 65 UK seniors? You will not need to look further; we reviewed and tested these services and this article contains the necessary information.

Keep reading to discover the best insurance options for senior citizens to cover private health care in the United Kingdom.

ProviderScoreDetails
1. Bupa★★★★★Click Here
2. Freedom Health Insurance★★★★★Click Here
3. Western Provident Association★★★★★Click Here
4. AXA★★★★Click Here
5. Saga★★★★Click Here
6. Aviva★★★★Click Here
7. National Friendly★★★★★Click Here
8. Vitality★★★★★Click Here

What Is Private Health Insurance for Over 65s, and How Does It Work?

Private health insurance is a type of cover for illnesses and injuries.

It applies to senior citizens over 65, specifically to acute conditions, hospital care, and sometimes alternative therapies.

This insurance type covers private healthcare surgery costs, tests and treatment in exchange for a monthly premium or annual fee. It typically excludes chronic conditions without a cure or needing extensive care for long-term conditions.

Private Health Insurance for Over 65 Features

It's important to consider the features of private health insurance cover for citizens over 65.

Here are the main features you should consider and compare when finding a policy.

  • Medical check — In some cases, you will need to undergo a medical examination before getting private health insurance. In other circumstances, you will need to fill out a declaration.
  • Higher premiums for existing conditions — A few insurers will charge higher premiums if you have existing health conditions. For example, your premium may be higher if you are a smoker.
  • Upper age limit — Some insurance providers will set an upper age limit, meaning you might not be able to access treatment if you're over 70 or 75.
  • Add-ons — Some insurance providers will offer add-ons such as dental cover and eye care, for which you may have to pay extra for your premium. These add-ons may be separate from medical insurance.

Private Health Insurance for Over 65s Pros and Cons

Several advantages and disadvantages apply to private health insurance for seniors over 65.

Consider these pros and cons before selecting an insurance provider to make the correct decision.

Pros

✔️ A wider range of treatments and tests — You can access various tests and treatments with this insurance type. The treatments and tests often exceed those offered by the NHS.

✔️ Less waiting time — You'll be able to receive treatment faster. The waiting times will be significantly lower than those you can expect with NHS care.

✔️ Larger range of treatment facilities — Your choice of treatment facilities is larger. You can choose from a wider range of access to private hospitals and a private room for your care.

Cons

❌️ Chronic conditions are not covered — If you have a chronic condition such as an allergy, your private health insurance cover will not cover this. Therefore, there are some restrictions on available care.

❌️ High cost — Private health insurance can have costly premiums. It's worth considering whether your budget can meet these high costs before you select one. Comparing premiums is also worthwhile, helping you find the most affordable option.

8 Best Private Health Insurance for Seniors Over 65

If you're ready to discover private health insurance options as a senior citizen over 65, we tested the best and have the reviews you need.

Keep reading to find the eight best options for private health insurance for seniors.

1. Bupa

Bupa offers private medical insurance with no age limits. This insurance provider will provide you with cover in exchange for a monthly premium. You can apply the cover to eligible treatment options if you fall unwell.

We found that the amount you can expect to pay for your monthly premiums from your account will depend on specific factors, such as your smoker status, residential address, age, and the particular policy you select. You'll receive coverage for conditions that began after the policy starts.

Examples of the cover this insurance provider offers include private hospital costs, tests, scans, and outpatient appointments. You can also get cover for mental health support scans after treatment, tests post-treatment, and cancer treatment cover.

We discovered that this insurance type has a few exclusions. It will not cover, ageing, food intolerances, allergies or pre-existing conditions before taking out the policy.

2. Freedom Health Insurance

Freedom Health Insurance offers private coverage to individuals aged between 18 and 70. We found that they will not accept new clients over 70 years old. It will provide you with coverage when you pay a premium each month.

Your monthly premiums will be determined by the coverage level your policy provides and your age. This senior health insurance premium also considers your policy excess, claims and private healthcare costs.

Each of these factors can impact your premium. You will need to request a quote to find the specific cost of Freedom Health Insurance.

We discovered that the premiums will be fixed for the initial two years, no matter the amount you claim. You'll also have no trouble getting appointments with virtual GPs, as Freedom provides unlimited access to this service.

This insurance covers medical treatment, medical bills, hospital admittances, cancer treatment, mental health care and outpatient treatment. It is one of the UK health insurance companies offering dental and optical treatment, alternative therapies, and private GP access.

3. Western Provident Association

With Western Provident Association, you can receive coverage for private healthcare services that align with your needs. You choose which health provider to receive treatment from. You select where to have your treatment.

We learned that some of the main benefits of this insurance type include coverage for diagnostic tests, support services for health and wellbeing, mental health support, coverage for outpatient treatment and comprehensive cancer care.

We also discovered that requesting a quote is required to find out the specific cost of healthcare insurance with WPA. A few factors can affect these costs, including your age, the benefits you select, and your residential address.

Making a claim just requires you to use the WPA Health app or claim over the phone or via the website. 

Western Provident Association also offers cash plans and dental plans. Their cash plan covers eye tests, prescription glasses, physiotherapy, and chiropractic care. It also offers coverage for private specialist consultations, tests, prescriptions and vaccinations.

Their dental plans cover routine examinations, filling costs, dental injury cover and restorative treatment related to oral cancer.

4. AXA

When you choose AXA Health, you will need to pay regular premiums to receive cover. We found that cover will depend on your medical history and encompass various treatment types. Examples of treatment this can cover include cancer, MRI, and CT scans.

You will also receive cover for specialist referrals and situations where you need to stay in the hospital. This policy provides different levels of cover and multiple benefits.

For example, you can access specialists quickly to determine your ailment, select from multiple hospitals, choose the specialist and receive the most recently approved cancer drugs via a specialist referral. 

Our experts discovered that there are several different add-on options you can select with this insurance type. From standard outpatient cover and mental health insurance to therapies, dentist, and optician cashback, you can select specific covers that match your health requirements and your financial budget.

You'll see that some exclusions apply. For example, any medical conditions you've had before taking out this insurance are not covered. Long-term conditions such as diabetes and most cosmetic treatments are also not covered.

5. Saga

Saga provides health insurance for individuals over 50. With this policy, we found that it’s possible to select from the vast range of private hospitals across the country when treatment is required.

You can receive video GP appointments when required and select from up to four different health plans that match your needs.

Some specific cover benefits you can receive include a cancer care team, mental healthcare, access to specialists, a pharmacist information line, and many additional services.

We discovered that asking for a quote is required to determine the cost of your cover. However, several factors can affect the premiums you pay. For instance, if you want to cover for yourself and your children, this can affect the cost. If you live in specific locations, this can impact the price you must pay for cover.

You may receive reduced premiums if you add an excess to your policy. You may also access lower costs if you select Saga's four-week wait option.

We also learned that you will not receive cover for pre-existing conditions. With Saga, you cannot claim private medical insurance for conditions you had before taking out the insurance policy.

6. Aviva

Aviva offers a few cover options for premium costs. When looking into Aviva, we found that they offer a core cover that will assist you with diagnostic tests, hospital costs, cancer treatment, and outpatient mental health treatment.

You can access their enhanced cover options, which will give you access to dental and optical services, mental health upgrades, other therapies and treatments such as chiropractic services, and an extended hospital list.

We discovered that as well as treatment for acute conditions, hundreds of hospitals, and cover for diagnostic tests, you can also receive cover for specialist fees. 

Aviva will not cover chronic conditions, including diabetes, asthma or epilepsy. This provider will also not cover pre-existing medical conditions. They sometimes observe your entire medical history and will exclude the specific conditions you already have. 

We found that a quote request is needed to find a personalised breakdown of the premium cost with Aviva. Aviva will consider where you live, your age, the number of claims you've made if you are switching to this provider and many other factors when setting the premium cost.

7. National Friendly

National Friendly offers private medical insurance. Specifically, we found that it provides four cover options. The first encompasses scans, therapies, tests, and access to private GPs. The second covers cancer operation treatments and expensive treatments as an in-patient.

The third offers equal coverage to the first level of cover, with up to £1m annually or in-patient cover for operations and cancer treatment. The fourth has no monetary limits and additional benefits such as stem cell and bone marrow treatments.

With National Friendly, you can access a virtual GP service, private prescriptions, video consultations and open referrals. This policy provider will accept adults aged between 18 and 85.

When looking at this provider, we found that policy terms with National Friendly are set for five years. Cancelling your policy will end your cover, and even if you have paid premiums, you will not receive the funds back.

We also discovered that a quote request from National Friendly is the only way to learn more about premium costs.

Claiming your policy just requires you to visit the claims page, contact National Friendly, and receive support from their professionals.

8. Vitality

When testing Vitality, we learned that it offers several private health insurance plans for UK citizens. It covers acute conditions and the cost of specialist drugs.

Its premiums begin from just £1.25 each day, but many factors can determine the cost you pay. For example, your age, current health and smoker status, and hospital access choice affect the premium cost.

There are a couple of exclusions with Vitality.

You will not be covered for long-term conditions such as asthma or diabetes. You'll also not get cover for existing conditions you had before taking out the policy.

With this provider, we found that you can access effective treatment options, video GP appointments, support for mental health, cancer treatments, and private physiotherapy coverage. It is a provider that offers optional extras, including dental, hearing and optical cover, plus the option to select where you will receive treatment.

Best Private Health Insurance for Over 65s: The Verdict

Selecting private health insurance gives you access to faster treatments, private healthcare services and many other advantages, such as a broader range of resources. Many options are available, with some of the best including Bupa and AXA.

If you are looking for private medical insurance, you may need to pay high premiums and costs. Therefore, compare health insurance providers and get quotes from a few options. Use our list of providers and shop around for private health insurance to find the perfect option for your budget.

Related Guides:

FAQs

Is There an Upper Age Limit for Private Health Insurance?

How Much is Private Health Insurance for Over 60s UK?

Is It Worth Paying for Private Healthcare in the UK?

How Can You Reduce Private Health Insurance Policy Premiums With Some Providers?

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