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NU clinical chief calling for change of PMI focus

Private medical insurance is an archaic way of managing healthcare products, says Norwich Union Healthcare head of clinical governance Dr Doug Wright.

At last week’s Protection Review conference at the Cafe Royal in London, Wright called for the structure of PMI to be tailored towards individual consumer needs.

He said: “When you are talking about PMI as a vehicle to avoid NHS waiting lists and which pays for a surgical procedure, it is well suited towards that but because it is suited to that, it is made up of pots of money. You will have pots of money you can spend on outpatient treatment, physiotherapy and specialist fees, for example. I think that is an archaic way to try and manage healthcare products and we need to move away to something that focuses on the individual patient.”

He said NU is already trying to move PMI forward by offering a more individual service.

In his speech, Wright predicted a stronger focus on the introduction of lifestyle underwriting and more debate over the possibility of PMI working alongside the NHS. He said: “Can PMI work alongside the NHS? No one knows yet. I would really hope that we are going to get into some more sensible dialogue around this than we have been able to in the past.”

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