I am assisting a family member who wishes to have health insurance in the UK. We have obtained quotes from a number of providers. However, these generally relate to the first year only. We understand that premiums for health insurance are likely to increase in subsequent years for a variety of legitimate reasons, including age, medical advances and general inflation.

With other forms of insurance, eg home or motor insurance, it can be advantageous to shop around every few years as an insurer which once offered best value may no longer do so. The possibility of doing so gives some protection against profiteering. With health insurance, however, it may not be sensible to change provider, since pre-existing health conditions are normally excluded from cover, so changing provider would mean losing cover for any new health conditions arising since starting cover with the first provider.

Question: What protection, if any, does a person with health insurance have against a provider engaging in straightforward profiteering, that is, increasing premiums year by year by more than can be justified by legitimate reasons such as those identified above?

1 Answer 1


To answer your actual question: health insurance providers in the UK are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. If you suspect unfair pricing arrangements, you can make a complaint initially through the provider themselves and then via the Financial Ombudsman Service if you're not happy with how the provider handles the complaint.

However, of course you are always free to get other quotes for comparison - say you take out a policy with provider X starting with no pre-existing conditions, then you develop condition C (treatment for which is now covered by provider X) and then at renewal time, you're unhappy with the renewal price for provider X.

You can contact provider Y and get two quotes, one with condition C excluded as a pre-existing condition, and one with condition C covered (you may need to go through a broker to get this rather than just getting an online website quote). It's likely that the former will be cheaper than your renewal quote and the latter may be more expensive. So you can then decide what the costs to you of ongoing treatment for condition C are and whether you'd rather go with provider X renewal, provider Y with C excluded, or provider Y with C covered. You might even use this information to negotiate with provider X for a cheaper renewal.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .