"It is no surprise that the problems people are facing in receiving treatment from the NHS are feeding into growing demand for private healthcare with private sector admissions reaching record levels in 2022."
- Brett Hill, head of health & protection at Broadstone
Earlier this year, Broadstone revealed that self-paid admissions to private medical treatment have been on a steady decline over the past twelve months. However, given that there are over 7.21m people waiting for NHS treatment, the consultancy believes this reduction in self-paid admission implies that thousands have begun to explore the possibility of private health insurance (PMI).
According to the latest report from Broadstone’s Insurance Gap Index, growing demand for employers to invest in group benefits, especially private medical treatment, has successfully narrowed the ‘insurance gap’. Analysing PHIN data on private medical treatment, Broadstone claims insured admissions have accelerated, rising to 140k which is the highest volume since before the Pandemic.
Exploring the stabilisation of self-pay figures, Broadstone has suggested that growth in the private health sector is now increasingly driven by businesses investing in private healthcare options like PMI to ensure employees’ health and wellbeing.
Commenting on these findings, Brett Hill, head of health & protection at Broadstone, has said:
“It is no surprise that the problems people are facing in receiving treatment from the NHS are feeding into growing demand for private healthcare with private sector admissions reaching record levels in 2022. But we are now starting to see evidence of a transition in how that care is funded.
“In the immediate aftermath of the pandemic, we saw a surge in self-pay admissions as people used savings they had built up through the lockdowns to accelerate appointments, diagnoses and treatments. That increase in self-pay now looks to have flattened.
“In its place, with the public health service facing ever-increasing pressures, insured admissions are now accelerating and approaching all-time highs. This is because businesses are recognising the need to invest in the wellbeing of their staff to stem the surge of economic inactivity due to ill-health that we are seeing.
“In practise, this means businesses are implementing or expanding employee PMI schemes so that more of their staff have the ability to access the private sector to receive quicker, affordable care. As these trends continue to feed through into the data, and with the pressures facing the NHS unlikely to ease in the near-term, we expect the Insurance Gap to continue narrowing further over the coming year.”