Many small business owners seem to think that they simply cannot afford health insurance options for themselves and their employees. But nothing could be further from the truth.
In this post we’ll explore some of the health insurance options for small business owners, before discussing how we can help you get the cover you need at a price you can afford.
Be sure to also check out our guide to saving money on business health insurance.
What is Business Health Insurance?
A small business health insurance plan allows you and your employees to access private healthcare services. This can include 24/7 access to UK GPs (even when they’re abroad), online video consultations, and fast-track access to appointments.
The Benefits of Business Health Insurance
A business health insurance plan allows employees to bypass long NHS waiting lists, meaning they and their families can access the services they need as soon as they need them. Through providing essential peace of mind, a business health insurance plan is one of the most valued of all employee benefits.
Business health insurance is as good for your company as it is for your staff. Quick and reliable access to private healthcare can contribute to a healthier and happier workforce. You’ll likely find that you’ll lose fewer days to unplanned absences, coupled with a rise in both productivity and staff retention.
Different Small Business Health Insurance Options
Individual Healthcare Policies
Some insurers refer to this option as Full Medical Underwriting (FMD). Essentially, every employee you want to cover will complete a comprehensive questionnaire to provide a summary of their medical history, including any pre-existing conditions. The insurer might also write to your employees’ GPs, if they need to clarify anything.
The insurer will then tailor your business health insurance plan based on every employees’ unique circumstances. From the start, every employee will know what is and is not covered in their policy. If any employee has a medical condition that could result in an exclusion from the policy, they can discuss alternative options to help them get the cover they need.
This approach can actually be the cheapest option for small businesses, as it will allow insurers to tailor their policies to meet your exact needs. This can help you avoid paying extra for any cover you or your employees will never need.
However, it can be immensely time consuming for insurers to arrange this sort of cover, and the larger your workforce, the longer it will take to arrange cover.
Group Health Insurance Policies
Instead of getting an individual plan for every employee in your company, you can instead get a group policy to cover your entire workforce. This is particularly useful for covering a number of employees who all face the same job risk level, such as warehouse staff or office workers. And often, insurers will offer discounts to larger groups.
A group health insurance policy will likely specify a number of exclusions, usually for pre-existing conditions, chronic conditions such as diabetes, fertility treatment, and certain elective treatments such as cosmetic surgery. Most private health insurance policies also exclude emergency care, as this is usually provided by the NHS.
With moratorium underwriting, instead of considering every employees’ medical history, insurers will defer the underwriting process until an employee makes a claim on their policy. Only at this point will the insurer look into the employees’ medical records to decide whether or not their condition is covered in the policy.
A business healthcare policy based on moratorium underwriting will sometimes offer cover on the basis that any pre-existing conditions your employees have experienced over the past five years will be excluded automatically.
This is a popular choice for small businesses who want to provide healthcare cover, as it can be a lot faster and more straightforward to put a policy in place. The downside is that employees may not know if they’re covered for any given conditions until they make a claim on their policy. One of the major benefits of private healthcare cover is the peace of mind it can bring. Employees might not be happy with the limitations and uncertainty that can result from moratorium underwriting.
Diagnostic cover is another popular choice for small businesses who want to provide health insurance, but who cannot afford a full policy.
With diagnostic cover, staff can still get fast-track access to GP appointments, and follow-up tests, investigations, and some out-patient treatment. Once day case or in-patient intervention is required they cover costs, but providers will help employees access NHS treatment.
Despite the limitations, such cover can still be a meaningful employee benefit. With patients facing difficulty accessing NHS services, there is immense value in getting rapid diagnoses and fully diagnosed referrals into hospital.
Bespoke Small Business Health Insurance From Capacity Insights
At Capacity Insights, we specialise in helping small businesses provide their workforces with flexible health insurance plans.
No matter what sort of budget you’re working with, we can help you provide your employees with all the peace of mind that comes from private healthcare cover, which means you can enjoy all the business benefits that a healthier and happier workforce will bring.
Whether you’re looking to invest in your first business health insurance plan, or you want to change or add to your current package, we’re here for you. Get in touch to find out more.