Status says its new European Health Cash Plan is the first product of its kind available to the European Economic Area (EEA).
The plan allows customers to claim back cash for certain everyday healthcare expenses that tend to be paid out-of-pocket, such as dental treatment or prescription eye glasses (which are typically not fully covered by national healthcare systems or by private medical insurance).
The application process is straightforward and simple with no medical required and with guaranteed acceptance. The plan offers four benefit levels and main benefits (with annual maxima) include:
* Up to £20 a night (max 20 nights) for hospital inpatient, parental stay and post-inpatient nursing at home.
* 75% cash back on hospital parking up to £75.
* 75% cash back for physician and consulting services up to £400.
* 75% cash back for routine dental treatment up to £200.
* 100% cash back for emergency dental treatment up to £200.
* 75% cash back optical benefit up to £200.
* 75% cash back for physiotherapy and complementary treatments up to £200 (max ten visits).
* 75% cash back up to £150 for chiropody and podiatry.
* 100% cash back for up to three prescriptions or adult vaccinations up to £50.
* 75% cash back wellness benefit, which pays for screening and health tests for the over 30s. Max £50.
* Up to £300 if a child is born or adopted.
* Up to £200 if a major arm or leg bone is broken.
* Up to £10,000 for accidental death.
*Up to £200 excess buy-back cover (12 month waiting period).
*75% cash back up to £300 for hearing aids and tests.
In addition, customers can add at extra cost:
* Up to £100,000 personal accident and accidental death benefit.
* £100 per day per unit income in hospital benefit. There is a £25,00lifetime maximum per unit and more than one unit can be bought.
* Emergency 24/7 European medical assistance.
Pre-existing medical conditions exclusions apply to some benefits. Level 1 and 2 plans do not include all benefits and only pay out in the customer’s country of residence. Level 3 and 4 plans cover all EEA countries. The plan is underwritten by Astrenska Insurance Ltd
Initial waiting periods apply to some services e.g. 90 days for dental optical and most hospital benefits.
The above benefits apply to individuals (a discount applies to couples cover) with a group version of the plan also available.
What They Say
Director Ian Atkinson said: “We are incredibly excited to be launching the first cash plan product available to the EEA. But we have a long road ahead of us. As this is a brand new ‘type’ of product for this market, we will be investing a lot of time and resources into educating European insurance brokers and the general public about the product.”
What We Say
"Health cash plans are common in the UK and have been for more than a century. However, they are not generally available in the EEA and so Status’ initiative will be interesting to follow. One argument is that UK cash plans work well because they link well with what is available through the NHS. However, other counties can have very different health systems, so there may be more overlaps or shortfalls.
"That said, Status has operated internationally for over 30 years so will know its markets well. If the benefits offered meet a client’s needs, this plan could be a very worthwhile buy for them, and it will be interesting to see whether other providers also look to expand into this market."