Cash Plan 66+

Benenden Healthcare Society

The Product

Benenden’s subsidiary Friendly Healthcare Organisation Ltd has joined with Engage Mutual to offer this health cash plan aimed at UK resident individuals aged 66 and over (it already has another plan for those 65 and under) and has no upper age limit at outset or later. For joint plans, both lives must be aged 66 or over. Premiums start at just £10 a month and there are three levels of cover available, providing the following maximum annual benefits:

Benefit                                Level 1    Level 2    Level 3

Optical 100% of cost, up to    £40        £80         £110

Dental 100% of cost, up to     £45        £85         £135

Complementary therapies (chiropractic; acupuncture; osteopathy, and homeopathy) 100% of cost up to:                                          £80        £160      £249

Subject to maximum visits pa 3            6            9

Hearing aid 100% of cost

up to:                                   £75            £150     £225

Hospital inpatient benefit        -                £10        £20

per night, up to a max

of 10 nights a year

Hospital day surgery

max 10 days pa                  -                 £5           £10

A Level 1 plan costs £10 a month (for single lives; joint plans, which include full cover for a partner, cost £19.50 a month and offer the same benefits to both insured persons), Level 2 costs £20 a month (£39.50 joint) and Level 3 plans cost £30 a month (£59.50 joint). All pre-existing conditions are excluded, and there is a three month initial waiting period that also applies if a partner is added or if benefits are increased. However, Engage Mutual may waive this qualifying period, according to the plan’s literature.

Pros

  • Cash plan targeted just at older clients.
  • Low cost.
  • Simple to buy and understand.

Cons

  • Most benefits offer relatively low levels of cover.
  • Phrases such as pre-existing conditions need a full explanation – especially as older customers are more likely to have them.
  • Initial three month waiting period before claims can be made.

RATING:
7 out of 10

SELECT THIS FOR... Over 65s who want a health cash plan without benefits designed to appeal more to younger people.

The Company

Founded in 1905 and based in York since 1990, Benenden Healthcare Society is one of the UK’s oldest mutual healthcare societies and has a membership of over 900,000 people. It is best known for its discretionary healthcare services to the public sector. This plan is underwritten by Engage Mutual Assurance - the two Yorkshire based mutuals having consolidated their relationship in 2011.

Contact Details

Website: www.benenden.org.uk

Telephone: Please see website for most appropriate telephone contacts.

The Literature

Please see website for details.

What They Say

Marketing and business strategy director Marc Bell said: "With the addition of the 66+ cash plan, Society members of all ages now have the opportunity to apply for a cash plan product. The cash plans, together with our ever-improving core product, gives a whole new level of healthcare reassurance."

What We Say

Andy Couchman Andy Couchman

"At a time when simplified products are (or should be) on everyone’s agenda, it is worth reminding ourselves that some products have long fallen into this category. We applaud Benenden (and Engage) for targeting older people too, offering a plan that offers the benefits most suited to (and affordable to) older people.

"As with other products reviewed recently, we do feel that all insurers should now explain exactly what they mean by exclusions such as not covering pre-existing conditions. That is especially important for older customers, who are more likely to have pre-existing conditions. All that is needed is a full explanation and an example or two of what is meant by a term that many people outside the insurance world simply never use. That said, this is a simple and appealing plan that offers relatively low benefits, but at affordable premiums too."

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