"Crucially, everyone needs to understand that health and wellbeing support is there for the before, during, and after, and while we all hope that waiting times are reduced soon, we’re glad to have been there for those who needed us in 2022."
- Christine Husbands, RedArc managing director
Christine Husbands, RedArc managing director believes that these referral statistics “reflect the national picture, that many individuals are experiencing exceptionally long waiting times both for elective and emergency treatment on the NHS.”
Given these delays, Husbands feels insurers must offer support and properly communicate added-value benefits that may help policyholders manage symptoms, “even if there are problems or delays in receiving a diagnosis or treatment plan.”
“A common refrain when people are referred to us is, ‘I wish I’d known about you sooner,’ demonstrating that the industry can do more to communicate what is available and how to access support,” Husbands added.
In response to these findings, RedArc believes more support for patients on waiting lists is needed, including advice about pain management, symptoms, and when to seek medical attention; how to navigate the NHS, signposting to specialist local and national support groups and charities; provision of relevant reading materials; advice about how to communicate with family, friends, and employers; arranging therapies to complement current medication or manage symptoms; and provision of medical aids and equipment.
Husbands notes that “the wait before a diagnosis, operation, or treatment plan can be really taxing for people and their families with life as normal on hold and the overriding concern that the delays will exacerbate their illness.
“The dedicated support of a nurse can be of real benefit at this time both from a clinical and emotional point of view and the support may also help people to remain at work, and crucially remain earning, which is good for their mental and financial health.”