Pinnacle Insurance has introduced a healthcare cashplan aimed at the mature end of the age spectrum.
The senior health cashback plan is available to anyone between the ages of 18 and 79, but the type of benefits it offers are geared towards older people. This is why it provides cash benefits towards the cost of hearing aids and home help rather than cash benefits relating to childbirth.
The plan has five levels of cover with premiums ranging from £1.50 a week to £12 a week. It includes benefits for a hospital stay, routine dental and optical treatment, lump sums for recuperation and care for the elderly, funeral benefit and complementary medicine like acupuncture and osteopathy. Free cover is provided for partners of policyholders who are under 80.
Most healthcare cash plans are aimed at adults in general and families rather than older people. The premiums of those plans will often cover benefits older people would never need so the Pinnacle plan could be a useful addition.
A comparison with Norwich Union's new individual cash plan illustrates this point. Like the Pinnacle plan, it has five levels of cover with premiums ranging from £6 a month to £30 a month for a single person and £8 a month to £30 a month for couples. Maternity and paternity benefit of between £200 and £1,000 per child is provided which older people are paying for but would not need.
However, some benefits that are relevant to older people are more competitive with Norwich Union. For a premium of £12 a month, Norwich Union pays 60 per cent towards the cost of a hearing aid up to £110. Someone paying the equivalent at £3 a week with Pinnacle would get 50 per cent of the cost up to £45. Similarly, nursing home in-patient benefit would be higher at £50 a day with Norwich Union compared to £15 a day with Pinnacle for premiums on the same basis.