Will I need to provide details of my health? - Private Medical Insurance
As described in the ‘What am I covered for? What does my cover not include?’ section of this guide, there are a number of medical conditions which you will not be able to get private medical insurance cover for. You won't normally be covered for an illness from which you are suffering, or have already had (commonly known as pre-existing conditions).
A medical examination is not normally required unless you are applying for life insurance. Insurance companies may accept your application for cover in one of two ways:
Medical history declaration
You are asked to fill in a form, giving details of your medical history. If necessary, the insurance company may write to your doctor for more information. It is essential that you give all the information you are asked for. If you don't you may find that your insurance company questions claims that you make in the future. If you are not sure whether or not to mention something, it is best to do so. If you have a medical condition which is likely to come back, the insurance company will issue a policy, but that condition (and any related to it) will probably not be covered, either indefinitely, or for a set period of time.
This is when you are asked to fill in a form, but you are not asked to give details of your medical history. Instead, the insurance company does not cover any medical condition which existed in the last (usually) five years. These conditions may automatically become eligible for cover, but only when you do not have symptoms, or receive treatment, medication, tests and advice (from your GP or a specialist) for that condition for a continuous period of (usually) two years, after your policy has started. There are some conditions, for example chronic conditions, that will probably never be eligible for this delayed cover because you will always need regular or occasional treatment, medication, tests or advice for them.
You should not delay getting medical advice or treatment, simply to get cover. If your insurance company offers a "moratorium", they will give you printed information explaining how their particular moratorium works. You may also want to ask the insurance company, or salesperson, to explain how it works.
Private Medical Insurance Guide:
- Guide to Private Health Insurance
- What is private health insurance?
- What types of private Health insurance are available?
- How do I buy private health insurance?
- How do I choose the right cover?
- What does my health insurance cover include?
- What are pre-existing conditions?
- What will affect my premiums?
- Can private medical insurance cover older people?
- Will I need to provide details of my health?
- How can I reduce the costs?
- Can I have private treatment through the NHS?
- Will my cover be affected if I am disabled?
- How do I make a claim?
- How is private health insurance controlled?
- What if I want to change to a new insurance company?
- Can I be covered while abroad?
- What does ‘self-paying’ patient mean?