The number of people who bought personal private medical insurance jumped nearly 2 per cent last year to 1,030,000.
Now 5.9m adults and children in the UK are covered by either personal or corporate PMI policies.
ABI director of general insurance and health Nick Starling says PMI offers people greater choice of treatment and other services for a wide range of medical conditions and injuries and also takes pressure off the NHS.
Over 90,000 more companies bought PMI for their employees in 2006 than 2005 and Starling is thrilled by the fact more people are now covered.
He says: “It is encouraging that more individuals are choosing to buy PMI for themselves and their families. PMI bought by companies on behalf of their employees has continued to increase in popularity too, helping to ensure that people can get back to work sooner after illness or injury.”