Life and health insurance explained

With all the types of insurance on offer, it can sometimes be difficult to figure out which ones you need and what the difference is between them. Here we explain the difference between two of the most common types of insurance: health insurance and life insurance.

Health insurance

Health insurance, also known as private medical insurance, is basically insurance for your health, while you are still living. It is designed to protect you from the cost of medical expenses if you do become ill, as long as you are affected by one of the conditions covered in your policy. It means you can get access to the best quality treatments and could avoid NHS waiting times.

Health insurance policies vary in their coverage – for example many do not cover pre-existing medical conditions while others do. Make sure to compare policies and find the one best suited to you and your needs.

Life insurance

Life insurance is a policy in which the insurer pays a designated sum of money upon the death of the insured person. This payment may be used to support relatives or heirs, and to cover other expenses that may occur after death, such as funeral expenses.

With some life insurance policies, payment can also be triggered by terminal illness or critical illness, meaning that the insured person could get the benefit of a lump sum while they are still alive, but diagnosed with a specific illness. This depends on the terms of the individual's insurance policy, as agreed upon with their provider.

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