Guide to Private Healthcare

At The McIndoe Centre we understand that waiting for surgery or treatment can be an anxious time for you and your family. With more people considering private healthcare, it's important that patients understand their options.

IHPN, with support from the Patient’s Association, has developed a range of resources to help patients navigate private healthcare. In this guide to private healthcare, you will be able to find answers to the most common questions:

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What is private healthcare?

Private healthcare is available for anyone who chooses to pay for their treatment or who has healthcare insurance to cover the cost.

You can usually get treatment faster than in the NHS and you may be able to see doctors or have treatments that are not available via the NHS.

Private healthcare is provided by either an independent hospital or clinic, which is not part of the NHS.

How can I access private healthcare?

Most patients can get treatment from an independent hospital or clinic following a referral from their GP.

Independent hospitals or clinics will see patients without a referral, but they may still need to consult a patient’s GP before providing treatment.

You may not need a GP referral if you want to pay for a scan, diagnostic test or physiotherapy.

How do I choose a healthcare provider or doctor for my private treatment?

When paying for treatment, you can choose both your healthcare provider and doctor. Your GP may be able to make some recommendations.

You can also look at the Private Healthcare Information Network (PHIN) website which provides information on all the different independent hospitals and consultants across the country.

» See The McIndoe Centre profile

The Care Quality Commission in England (CQC) inspects independent healthcare providers, just as it does NHS hospitals and clinics. You can search its website for its assessments of independent providers.

» See The McIndoe Centre CQC report

How do I pay for private treatment?

There are two ways to pay for private healthcare.

Self-pay

You can “self-pay” (or “pay as you go”) where you can either pay the total cost before receiving treatment or spread the cost of treatment over a number of months or years through payment schemes offered by many providers.

Health Insurance

You can also use health insurance (also known as private medical insurance or PMI), which pays some or all your medical bills.

Many people have health insurance through their employer, so always check with them first to see if you are covered.

Health insurance policies vary significantly, so always check the terms and conditions of your policy to understand what yours covers.

How much does private healthcare cost?

Prices for private healthcare differ depending on where you live and which provider you use. Most independent providers offer fixed price packages that cover all the costs relating to your care including doctors’ fees and nursing, accommodation, and food costs.

Why choose The McIndoe Centre?

  • Our ethos of providing excellent patient care means that we will be with you every step of the way during your journey with us
  • We have harnessed the expertise of a highly talented, multi-disciplinary team to deliver only the very best in healthcare
  • Our facilities showcase the latest technology supporting rapid treatment of a variety of conditions
  • All of our consultants are fully accredited and are on the specialist register of the General Medical Council
  • Majority of our patients rate their overall experience as either very good or excellent.
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