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‘Insurance Gap’ narrows amid surge in insured admissions 

by | Sep 26, 2023

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Launched in 2022, the Broadstone Insurance Gap Index tracks the relative changes in self-pay and insured private medical treatments alongside NHS waiting lists since 2019. 

Analysis of Private Healthcare Information Network (PHIN) data1 on private medical treatments from leading independent consultancy Broadstone reveals the narrowing “insurance gap” amid an uptick in demand from employers looking to support the health of their colleagues. 

As of Q1 2023, insured admissions are at 105% of their Q1 2019 level after seeing a 10 percentage point increase in the preceding six months (95% as per the end of Q3 2022). 

In contrast, while self-pay admissions are at 142% of their pre-pandemic level that has dropped back from a peak of 144% in Q1 2022 driving the “insurance gap” to its narrowest point since the pandemic. 

It hints that employers are increasing their offering and coverage of private healthcare options allowing more workers to access insured treatments via the private sector. 

Meanwhile, NHS waiting lists have continued to rise now and reached 173% of their Q1 2019 level as of Q1 2023. Since then there has been further, continued growth in waiting lists. 

Brett Hill, Head of Health & Protection at Broadstone, commented: “We are now starting to see the expected acceleration in insured admissions spurred by the crisis in the NHS. 

“The closing of the “insurance gap” shows how underlying demand for private healthcare treatments is being addressed by the adoption of insurance, often as part of a workplace 

benefits package. More and more CEOs recognise the business case for private healthcare options with the NHS crisis making apparent the investment return from supporting the health and wellbeing of their colleagues. If the NHS cannot be relied on to keep their staff in the workforce then they must invest to do so or suffer the hit to their bottom-line. 

“The latest PHIN data only takes us to the opening quarter of 2023 yet, concerningly, we are still seeing further deterioration in the public health service as waiting lists continue to grow.”

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