With everyone back working again after a lovely summer and the kids back at school, we will soon be approaching that time of year when most people renew their health insurance. For some people, they simply renew their existing plan without too much thought – if it was right for you a few years ago, surely it is still the right plan?
Well the answer to that is unfortunately – no. Or at least what was the right plan in previous years may not be the best plan for you going forwards. At Lyons Financial Services we recommend that you never just renew plans without a thought. There is always merit in examining a range of areas to see if you can find a plan that better suits your needs and your pocket.
We have deep knowledge of all of the plans available in the Irish market and more often than not, we will usually find an alternative plan to your current one that will just work a little bit harder for you. For this reason, we are always delighted when asked to review health insurance plans on behalf of clients. However if you decide to do the legwork yourself, here are five areas that we think you should consider.
1. Have you the right benefits?
Today there is a very extensive array of different benefits available across the various health insurance plans offered by the different insurers. There are often subtle differences in the cover and benefits, with some benefits being far more valuable to your specific circumstances than others. Your first task is to identify what specific benefits are most valuable to you.
2. What hospitals do you want to access?
Different plans also offer access to different hospitals. You may have a preference for specific hospitals, because of their geographical location, their areas of specialism or their comfort levels. Once you match the hospitals that you prefer with the different benefits available across the range of plans on offer, now you have really started to tailor a plan to meet your needs!
3. What add-on benefits are available?
Health insurance is no longer about paying for hospital care and GP visits. Some plans offer a very broad range of additional benefits from helping people to give up smoking, a payment towards gym fees and private training sessions and even a contribution towards health gadgets. These are changing all of the time as the insurers try to outdo their competitors, so it is important that these are fully researched before each renewal. Does your current plan have the best add-on benefits to support our lifestyle?
4. Are there any special offers?
Health insurers bring out special offers regularly to try and attract particular segments of the market. We’ve seen a very broad range of offers in recent years around cover for children – to the point that quite a number of health insurance subscribers have completely separate plans, sometimes with different insurers for their children. What’s right for you might not be the best plan for the kids, when you take these offers into account.
5. Are you paying more than you should?
As you are probably well aware, the pricing of plans never stays the same from year to year! The different providers regularly change their pricing policies to reflect their claims experience, their outlook for the market and sometimes to influence their market share. These pricing strategies create opportunities for better deals for you, the consumer. Sometimes you’ve just got to find them – or better still, get us to find them for you.
Of course, we strongly recommend that you let the professionals do the legwork for you as it is very complex matching all of these factors across the various plans of the different insurers. Lyons Financial Services are one of Ireland’s leading health insurance advisers and we would love the opportunity to help you. Please give us a call at 01 8015808 and let us find the best health insurance plan for you.