How to access private healthcare in the UK

Knowing how to access private healthcare can give you more options and flexibility when it comes to managing your health. Whether it’s for faster treatment, specialist care, or simply personal preference, understanding the process is crucial. To make this as simple as possible, we’ve put together a comprehensive guide to help you navigate private healthcare in the UK.

Private healthcare professional in a white coat shakes hands over a table

How do I go private instead of using the NHS?

You can access private healthcare in just a few simple steps:

  • Research and choose a private healthcare provider – Look for hospitals and clinics that offer the services and treatments you need. Check their reputation, facilities, and patient reviews.
  • Initial consultation – Book an appointment with a private consultant or specialist to discuss your healthcare needs. This is your chance to ask any questions you may have about the procedure and ensure it’s suitable for you.
  • Treatment plan – Once diagnosed, your consultant will outline a treatment plan tailored to your condition.
  • Insurance coverage or self-pay – Determine how you’ll cover the costs. This can be through private health insurance, out-of-pocket payments, or a combination of both.
  • Book your treatment – Arrange appointments, tests, and procedures according to your consultant’s recommendations. With us, most patients only have to wait 4-6 weeks for their surgery.

Do I need a GP referral for private treatment?

In most cases, you can access private healthcare without a GP referral. However, some insurance policies or specialist services may require a patient referral for coverage or access to certain treatments. It’s best to check with your private medical insurance provider or the healthcare facility for specific requirements.

Otherwise, just give our team a call to discuss your needs and book a consultation!

Mixing NHS and private treatment

It’s possible to receive both NHS and private treatment for different aspects of your healthcare needs. Some patients opt for private consultations or procedures to expedite diagnosis or treatment while still utilising NHS services for ongoing care or management.

Prices and payment options

Private healthcare costs vary depending on the provider, treatment, and location.

We offer fixed price packages for all of our scheduled surgeries. That means that apart from the £95 for the consultation, everything else is included in your quoted price – including any necessary tests.

Our payment options include:

Choosing a private hospital

When choosing a private hospital, there are a few key points you should keep in mind. You should check if it:

  • is conveniently located
  • has a good reputation for quality care
  • offers modern facilities
  • provides the specialised services you might need
  • has satisfied patients. These factors will help you make the right choice for your healthcare needs.

Choosing a specialist consultant

When choosing a specialist consultant surgeon, look at their qualifications, experience, and how they communicate with patients. Check if they’re skilled in treating your condition, have a good track record, and communicate well. These factors help ensure you find the right consultant for your needs.

How to book

There are a few simple steps to booking private healthcare appointments. Firstly, you’ll need to get in touch with your healthcare provider or hospital directly. Next, you’ll schedule an appointment with the consultant or specialist you need to see. Then, depending on your situation, you’ll arrange the payment method or provide insurance coverage details.

Finally, it’s important to confirm the date and time of your appointment to ensure everything is set up smoothly.

Our booking process is designed to be as smooth and patient-friendly as possible. After your consultation you’ll be able to book a surgery date and time that’s convenient for you. Our customer care team is ready and waiting if you have any questions along the way.

Accessing private medical treatment FAQs

Find the answers below to some of our frequently asked questions about accessing private treatment.

How do I go about accessing private healthcare?

When looking to make use of private healthcare, begin by researching your options. These should be based on:

– your needs
– your location
– patient satisfaction at the chosen hospital.

Once you’ve found a provider that suits you, reach out to book a consultation. From there, you can talk to your consultant about planning treatment and funding options.

Can you just walk into a private hospital?

No. In most cases, appointments are necessary for consultations, tests, and procedures at private hospitals.

Do private hospitals have access to NHS records?

Private hospitals may request access to your NHS records and medical history. This is with your consent, and ensures continuity of care and accurate diagnosis.

Will the NHS pay for private surgery?

The NHS typically does not cover the costs of private surgery unless it’s arranged under specific circumstances. This includes emergency treatment unavailable through the NHS.

Do you have to go through your GP to go private?

You can access private healthcare directly without an NHS GP referral letter. However, some insurance policies or specific services may require one.

Who is the best private healthcare provider in the UK?

The best provider for you depends on your medical needs and location. Look for providers that have access to your required treatment and have a good reputation when it comes to patient satisfaction.

Carrying out 5,000 treatments a month, Practice Plus Group is one of the largest independent providers of private, insured and NHS healthcare in England and is recommended by 99% of patients.

How does private treatment differ from the NHS?

Compared to the NHS, private treatment often offers:

– shorter waiting times
– more personalised care
– access to specialist consultants
– a wider range of amenities and services.

Most private providers offer easy access to treatment. Information about services is provided, along with consultant information and access to enquiries. At Practice Plus Group, you can choose a time and date for your initial appointment and have your treatment within 4-6 weeks of booking.