It pays for private treatment for any health conditions you develop after you take out the policy. This includes UK treatment you cannot get for free on the NHS.

Each insurer has different rules on what they can pay out for. This means you need to work out what symptoms and types of treatment you need to cover before you apply.

Comprehensive insurance usually includes cover for a much wider range of conditions and treatments than their other policies.

What does comprehensive health insurance cover?

Basic health insurance policies are usually cheaper but often only pay out for inpatient treatment, which is when you need to stay in a hospital bed for treatment or tests.

Comprehensive medical insurance policies usually cost more but cover you as an outpatient too.

This includes treatment, consultations with specialists and tests that do not need you to stay in hospital overnight.

They can also pay out for a wider range of sicknesses and injuries and offer cover for things like:

  • Treatment for cancer, e.g. chemotherapy

  • Access to a private room if you stay in a hospital

  • Optical and dental care

  • Physiotherapy

  • Psychiatric care

  • Alternative therapies, e.g. acupuncture

What is not included?

Each company's comprehensive policies have different rules on what private healthcare they pay out for and what is excluded.

Some comprehensive providers include cover for non-standard treatments, but others charge a higher premium if you add them as extras.

Compare comprehensive health insurance

Work out what treatment types and symptoms you need your policy to cover. You can then find policies that pay out for all of them and choose the cheapest one.

You can find a complete health insurance policy online:

  • Using this comparison, which shows the benefits you can get from each insurer and what levels of cover they offer.

  • Using a broker, who can get you health insurance quotes and offer advice on choosing the best policy. You can contact a broker here.

Once you have several quotes, check they offer the cover you need and choose the one with the lowest monthly price.

Comprehensive health insurance FAQs


Will health insurance cover my existing conditions?


Some policies can include them, but many do not pay out for them. Here is how cover for pre-existing conditions works.


Do I need a medical check before I get health insurance?


Some policies make you fill out a declaration about your health, and some may need to run medical tests. But moratorium policies do not do this.


Will my health affect the cost of my insurance?


Yes, some policies could charge you more if you have existing conditions. Others only charge you more if you need to cover treatment for them.


Which hospitals or doctors can I use?


Most insurers give you a choice of several medical facilities when you are referred for treatment.


Can I still use the NHS if I get health insurance?


Yes, you can get free treatment on the NHS or use your policy to pay for private treatment


Does health insurance cover me abroad?


No, most of these policies only cover treatment in the UK, but you could get medical cover from your travel insurance if you go abroad.


Can I get health insurance if I am disabled?


Yes, but some insurers do not cover treatment for any conditions that are related to your disability.