Health insurance reviews
Don't just take our word for it - read some of our customer reviews below.
A retired NHS hospital theatre sister and keen golfer, Miss Rhona Hunter was a very active 71-year-old. However, in July 2016, she started to experience intermittent groin pain and over the next few months, the pain increased in such severity to curtail normal day-to-day and leisure activities. Her Saga Health Insurance policy helped her to access treatment quickly and get back to enjoying her normal activities as soon as possible.
Miss Hunter has had private medical insurance for most of her adult life. When her previous provider became “very expensive”, she switched to Saga and saved money. In the nine years since Miss Hunter became a Saga Health Insurance customer, she had enjoyed excellent health and never had to make a claim, until this last year. “The hip took me by surprise,” said Miss Hunter.
Having worked in the NHS for forty years, Miss Hunter believes private healthcare “takes some of the burden away from the NHS”. She also says, “I’ve witnessed some things in the NHS that I wouldn’t want to experience myself”. Terrible pain brought on by a game of tennis was the last straw. Miss Hunter had been experiencing worsening pain for a while so she visited her GP who sent her for an MRI to diagnose the cause. Having waited a couple of weeks for the scan through the NHS, it then took five weeks for the results to come through.
Miss Hunter learnt that she’d been walking on a fractured hip, caused by a lack of blood flow to the hip bone.
Not wanting to wait any longer, Miss Hunter asked her GP for a referral to an orthopaedic surgeon of her choice, called us for authorisation and saw a consultant surgeon just two days later at her local private hospital.
“I couldn’t fault the service from Saga...” said Miss Hunter. “it has been excellent, absolutely brilliant. When it all first happened, I was very apprehensive but I can’t fault the support I had from the other person at the end of the phone."
“They were very patient because I probably asked some stupid questions. When you’re in that alarming situation there’s a high level of anxiety and fear, you don’t always get things straight. The claims team were caring, and they really took the worry away at what is a difficult time.”
Within three weeks, she’d had a total hip replacement and was recuperating in her private room. Four days later she was discharged from hospital. “I was so glad I had private insurance,”
For Miss Hunter, one of the most important benefits of private health insurance, alongside speed, is choice, “I had the opportunity to choose who I wanted to go to.” A consultant orthopaedic surgeon was recommended to her for her hip replacement and through her Saga HealthPlan, Miss Hunter was able to have complete control and arrange to have her surgery with her preferred consultant, at a time that was convenient for her.
Receiving treatment in the private hospital meant she had good food, nurses who had time to spend with her, and the privacy and dignity of her own private room. This was particularly important to Miss Hunter as she’s used to living on her own and didn’t want to share a room, “I wanted privacy too; not being in a ward with snoring people. Being able to rest at a time when you’re in pain makes recuperating so much easier.”
After her discharge from hospital, Miss Hunter received treatment from a local physiotherapist. She wasn’t allowed to drive until six weeks after her operation so being able to choose a convenient practitioner meant that she didn’t have to rely on friends to drive her to the next town. Instead they could simply drop her into the village.
Her HealthPlan covered all her physiotherapy sessions, “When the adviser told me I could have up to 20 sessions, I was quite surprised,” said Miss Hunter. “I had to call back and check.” And when her physiotherapist recommended hydrotherapy, Miss Hunter was covered for this too.
Unfortunately, whilst recovering from hip surgery, Miss Hunter injured the rotator cuff in her shoulder. Her GP told her that the waiting time for an MRI scan was four weeks, so Miss Hunter said “Don’t worry, I’ll call Saga” and four days later, it was done.
It’s been eight months since Miss Hunter’s surgery; she’s able to walk Jake for an hour twice a day, and she’s back on the golf course. “I’m not fit enough to play more than nine holes at the moment, and I have to use a buggy because my golf course is very hilly and slow play is frowned upon, but I’m enjoying being able to play again.”
“I’m not in any pain due to my hip but my leg does get tired and feels a bit weak and wobbly. My consultant advised that it would probably be a year before I start to feel back to normal. The physio and hydrotherapy has helped me enormously, I really recommend it. I’m also going to Pilates to try and get my muscles going again.
“I’m dying to get back to playing golf properly but I’ve got to be patient. It’s not until you’re suddenly in the position that you have to use your health insurance that you worry about whether or not you’re covered. It’s very reassuring when you do have cover in place.”
Miss Hunter is now looking forward to her Saga holiday to Sicily in November.
"I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis of the knee some years ago, but had no idea that my hip was affected until my daughter remarked that I was limping badly" says Caroline, who worked on an NHS transitional care ward for mothers and babies.
"I went to see the GP and was referred to a specialist who told me that, although young, I needed a hip replacement"
Receiving quality care
Caroline stayed in a hospital for six days and was very pleased with the care.
"The consultant I requested carried out the operation in a lovely private hospital just 500 yards from home. The hospital is in beautiful surroundings, it's very quiet and clean and the staff are lovely. It was great having a private room so I could rest without interruption. I had my own wet room, the food was freshly cooked and well presented, and the free parking made it easy for people to visit me."
"Privacy is also very important to me. I had been disappointed by the lack of dignity on the NHS when a previous medical problem I experienced was viewed by a group of medical students without first asking my permission. By contrast, at the private hospital everything was completely discreet."Although Caroline is an NHS nurse she believes there is a place for both private and NHS care.
"There is no doubt that, if I’d had to have my hip replacement on the NHS, I would have waited much longer. As I love my job and wanted to get back to it quickly, that just wasn’t on. When I called Saga after being diagnosed it was all incredibly simple. There was someone I could speak to personally and they sent the forms out the next day with a letter to say I could proceed."
Taking care of the details
Caroline was especially impressed that Saga dealt with the hospital directly.
"I didn't have to do anything after I had a set the ball rolling. You don't want to be worried by financial considerations when you are trying to recover from an operation. Saga took all the worry away and sent me the details after they had paid the invoice. This year I have reaped the benefits of a No Claim Discount which has reduced my monthly premium."
"The bill for my hip replacement came to £11,000 and my previous operation cost £5,000 – there is no way I could have afforded either out of my own pocket. As a nurse I don’t earn a big wage, but good health is not something I am prepared to compromise. I would rather miss out on buying a new top or household knick-knack than not have health insurance. My Saga HealthPlan is certainly money well spent. It covers everything including cancer. I also have a policy for my husband. He’s never been ill but I know he would hate to be on a mixed NHS ward, so this gives us both peace of mind. All in all, when it comes to private healthcare insurance, this is as good as it gets."
Choosing the right provider
Caroline previously had a care package with another well-known health insurer but decided to look for something different.
"I did loads of research. I was looking for something straightforward where I didn’t have to pay money upfront and Saga fitted the bill perfectly. There are no hidden clauses and their policy was simply the best in terms of price and benefits."To see how affordable our health insurance is, simply get an online quote within minutes.
Mr & Mrs Suthers saved £1,500 when they changed their health insurance to SagaChanging your health insurance to Saga is easy and it could save you money as well. Mr Suthers and his wife saved £1,500 when changing their health insurance to Saga. Mr & Mrs Suthers have had health insurance for 30 years so they know what they are looking for.
Shopping aroundMr Suthers had an employer's health insurance policy for many years and decided to continue to cover his health once he retired. Unfortunately, his premiums increased significantly so he decided to shop around.
That's when he found Saga Health Insurance he received the same level of cover but still saved around £1,500.
Changing to Saga Health InsuranceMr Suthers said:
“Switching to Saga couldn't have been easier. The call centre staff were so friendly and helpful, and it was a relief knowing that when I called, I’d speak to a person on the other end of the phone, rather than one of those press-button menus.”
Using their Health InsuranceMr Suthers and his wife had to make a number of claims on their polices, Mr Suthers said:
“I can honestly say that the whole process was exceptional. The claims handlers were so helpful and understanding and I really cannot thank them enough. Saga’s customer service is something they can be truly proud of – which is something I could only say about Saga. In fact, that’s the main reason I choose Saga. I’ve never given 100% to one company before, but it’s down to the service of Saga staff that I now choose Saga for all my insurance needs.”
“I’ve recommended Saga Health Insurance to two people who now have policies and if I ever talk to anyone about insurance, I’ll always recommend Saga.”
How much can you save?To see how much you can save simply get an online quote within minutes.
Pam Whitaker, a retired teacher from Yorkshire, discovered that having health insurance gave her the power to decide when and where she received high quality treatment. Pam is insured with Saga and she says that "dealing with Saga was such a great relief, they took care of absolutely everything."
Pam, had always enjoyed walks in the brisk air of the Yorkshire Dales. But a painful hip made her strolls more difficult.
Decide when and where you are treatedPam saw her GP and was promptly referred to a consultant.
"Days after seeing my GP I had a call from the consultant's office and an appointment was arranged for the very next day."
She decided to have a hip replacement through her Saga Health Insurance cover, but chose not to have the procedure straightaway. Instead, she opted for a time and date that suited her better and the operation was arranged at the hospital of her choice from an extensive list.
"The procedure was planned for July, because I needed it done at a convenient time and before I usually do my work marking A-level papers."
Treatment with home comfortsPam had the operation at a comfortable, private hospital and recuperated in a quiet, private room that had many home comforts.
"It was like being in a hotel, I had my own room and it was just a really pleasant place with marvellous staff."
"Also, I was able to invite my son and his girlfriend to the hospital for Sunday lunch in my room. Car parking was free and my visitors could come and go as much as I wanted."
Attentive post-operative carePam remained in hospital for a few days after the procedure. She was impressed by the care she received.
"At the private hospital, the whole experience was much more personable than what I was used to on the NHS. The nurses seemed to have more time to check on me, to see how I was doing or just stop for a chat."
Why choose Saga?After leaving hospital Pam continued to have physiotherapy under her Saga HealthPlan Secure. She was pleased by Saga's 'no quibbles' attitude to the costs she claimed for.
"It was such a relief to know that Saga was picking up the tab - I phoned and they just said 'send in the bills', they took care of absolutely everything. Dealing with Saga was such a great relief."
Enjoy the power of choiceYou too could enjoy the power of convenience, choice and excellent healthcare enjoyed by retired teacher Pam.
Get an online quote within minutes.
*Get your first two months free when you start your policy on or before 15 May 2018.
You'll need to pay by monthly Direct Debit and hold your policy for 12 months.