Private Medical insurance does not entirely replace NHS. In fact, they work in conjunction with each other so that you will receive the necessary treatment as soon as possible.
In the event of an emergency, nobody is expecting you to obtain a referral from your GP. Whether it is a car accident, stroke, heart attack or broken leg, you need to call the ambulance, who will help you immediately. Health insurance does not cover emergencies.
Unlike emergency treatment, elective conditions do not immediately threaten your life and typically involve obtaining a referral to see a specialist before any treatment. NHS aims to provide anyone with an appropriate treatment within 18 weeks from receiving this referral. However, the number of people waiting for way longer than 18 weeks has risen drastically in the last few years.
This is why more and more people consider health insurance to receive the best possible medical care without prolonged waiting times and have speedy access to high-quality diagnosis and specialist treatments and surgeries when you need them the most.
"Your own will" treatments
Although NHS only divide the treatments into emergency and elective categories, we also highlight the third category - your own will. Under this category, you will typically find the things you would like to do yourself without the doctor's referral—for example, cosmetic surgeries, laser eye corrections, certain dental procedures and many more. Those will also not be covered under the health insurance.