Top 10 private healthcare providers in the UK (ratings) - 2023 (2023)

The landscape of the UK health insurance industry is constantly evolving as providers innovate in response to customer demand but sometimes remove features.

With hundreds of different plans and providers on the market, researching the basic offerings from all insurers can be a daunting task. Although you can find many different marketplace comparison sites online, most do not allow you to simply search for the various providers without filling in all the information required for a quote.

According to a 2016 survey by the Association of British Insurers, there were 340 UK-based health insurers and 563 in Europe. In 2021, these numbers are sure to be exponentially higher.

This article looks at 10 of the best health insurers in the UK. Each section includes a brief description of the company, an overview of what its main products cover, and some additional information about its achievements and awards.

For personal advice, please contact one of our friendly experts. Hooray Health and Protection offers FREE quotes and unbiased advice. Just use the chat box on the right or give us a call01273 222805.

Table of contents hide

  • 1Allianz
  • 2Aviva
  • 3AXA
  • 4 Bupa
  • 5Exeter
  • 6Libertad
  • 8Saga
  • 9vitalidad
  • 10WPA
  • 11How to find the best private healthcare in the UK


Allianz is a German multinational insurance company that is one of the largest providers in the world. Their plans focus on international health insurance, which is offered in the UK and many other countries around the world.

Allianz can offer its customers three different levels of insurance plans. These plans are simply called Care Pro, Care Plus, and Care.

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These plans may include:

  • Insurance coverage for hospital and day patients
  • Optional outpatient health insurance
  • emergency treatments
  • medical evacuations
  • private hospital rooms
  • Expat Assistance Program
  • travel security services

The company has also done significant work to support environmental initiatives, reducing its carbon emissions by pursuing low-carbon investments and sustainable working solutions for the future.

2019,Allianzwas recognized as Corporate Social Responsibility/Business Sustainability Initiative of the Year at the British Insurance Awards for its efforts and achievements in this area.


Aviva is a London-based multinational insurance provider. Providing various forms of insurance to more than 33 million customers worldwide, mainly in the European and Asian markets.

The main health insurance products consist of three different plans. These plans are called Cancer Pledge, Expert Select, and Wellbeing Services.

The insurance coverage offered by these plans includes:

  • outpatient care
  • acute conditions
  • Access to hundreds of UK hospitals
  • Cancer screening coverage
  • Hospital and medical specialist fees

2020,Avivapaid out over £30bn in benefits and entitlements while investing over £11bn in green assets.

Aviva has worked in an award-winning partnership with the British Red Cross since 2016. This not-for-profit collaboration primarily involves helping with disaster relief, as well as providing strategic support and expertise.


AXA is a French multinational insurance company that is one of the largest health insurers in the UK. They mainly operate in Western Europe, North America and also in the India Pacific region.

Core coverage extends to:

  • Comprehensive insurance protection for hospital and day patients
  • Optional outpatient health insurance
  • Access to more than 250 hospitals
  • Speed-Dating-Service
  • Access to specialized cancer drugs
  • Unlimited GP consultations online or by phone
  • second opinion service
  • Access to free online health centers

AXAcreated the Health Tech & You Awards in 2014 to recognize the many achievements and innovations made in the healthcare industry each year. Named Health Insurer of the Year at the 2018 Moneyfacts Consumer Awards.

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They have committed £250m to 650 research products through the AXA Research Fund and also host a range of events each year to support various charities.


Bupa is a UK-based healthcare group and insurance provider with more than 80,000 employees and 31 million customers worldwide. They are specialists in mental health support and insurance but also offer extensive health insurance options with products such as Bupa Global.

Your primary health insurance coverage includes:

  • Insurance coverage for hospital and day patients
  • Optional outpatient health insurance
  • Choice of your own private doctor
  • Private rooms in hospitals
  • Mental health and wellness therapies
  • Private dental care after six months
  • Specialist in oncology treatment
  • Private physiotherapy and other treatments

Bupahas more comprehensive mental health coverage than any other health insurer in the UK and offers extensive treatment and support options for depression, anxiety and addiction, among many other conditions.

Bupa was also voted the 5th best place to work in the UK by LinkedIn.

Would you like to take out health insurance, but don't know where to turn? Ask the experienced realtors at Hurra Salud y Protección. As members of AMII, we are committed to providing our clients with the best advice. E-mail[email protected]or use the chat box on the right.

Carry out

The Exeter is a Devon based health insurer structured as a joint venture rather than a traditional company. This term describes a mutual insurance association.

Exeter's flagship health insurance product, Health+, includes:

  • hospital and day care
  • Optional outpatient health insurance
  • Unlimited Cancer Insurance
  • Cash benefit from the NHS
  • private ambulances
  • Home care
  • parental accommodation

IsExeterInsurance products have received numerous awards in recent years. These products include, but are not limited to, income protection, private health insurance, and individual life insurance.

By comparing its products to those of its competitors, The Exeter is able to continually ensure its customers are getting the best prices in the health insurance market.


Freedom is an award-winning UK private health insurance company, established in 2003. They are specialists in providing affordable and flexible health insurance.

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There are three main insurance plans that offer different levels of coverage. These includeFreedomElite, Freedom Essentials und Freedom Worldwide.

Freedom Elite includes:

  • Hospital and day coverage
  • cancer coverage
  • pregnancy complications
  • Cash benefit from the NHS
  • private ambulances
  • maternity allowance
  • MRTs, CT-Scans und PET-Scans
  • Home care
  • Zahnchirurgie

Freedom Essentials offers a fixed cash benefit, a cancer cash benefit, and optional ambulatory health insurance. Freedom Worldwide focuses on international health insurance but offers many of the same options.

Freedom also offers customers a 6% discount on annual payments across all plans, as well as a 2-year fixed premium policy that ensures coverage costs don't go up.

general and medical

General & Medical Insurance is a UK health insurer and a wholly owned subsidiary of General & Medical Securities Group. They offer numerous health insurance policies for individuals, families and businesses to clients around the world.

They have four main insurance plans. Essentials, everyday, lifestyle and elite.

These plans can include:

  • Hospitalization coverage
  • outpatient care
  • cancer treatments
  • health and wellness services
  • Cash benefit from the NHS
  • Stress-Hotline

general and medicalwe are the preferred health insurer of the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland.

They also offer a wide range of health insurance plans and accident insurance products for companies and professionals in the UK sports industry.


Saga is a Kent based insurance company with over 2.7 million customers. Their products focus on the 50+ health insurance market, but also offer various forms of travel insurance.

Sagaoffers four different health plans: Super, Secure, Saver Plus, and Support, all with different levels of coverage and additional rewards.

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Key aspects of your reporting include:

  • Insurance coverage for hospital and day patients
  • Optional outpatient health insurance
  • Saga GP Service that allows you to contact a doctor 24/7
  • Access to a network of private hospitals
  • Recovery care after treatments
  • Cash benefit from the NHS
  • dental accident benefit
  • External prosthesis benefit
  • Support from the Cancer Aid team

They are also the creators and owners of Saga Magazine, one of the best selling monthly subscription magazines published in the UK.


Vitality is a London based private health insurer with offices in Bournemouth and Stockport. They are a subsidiary of Discovery Limited, a South African financial services group.

Your basic care includes:

  • Insurance coverage for hospital and day patients
  • cancer coverage
  • acute conditions
  • stays in private hospitals
  • mental support
  • Menopause support
  • Full promise of coverage
  • Advice from healthcare professionals through Vitality Care
  • Access to online medical consultations and a 24/7 hotline with Vitality GP

vitalityThey have won several industry awards throughout their history including the British Insurance Awards 2020 and the Customer Cover Awards 2019 proving they are amongst the best private healthcare providers in the UK.


Western Provident Association is a British not-for-profit health insurance provider based in Somerset. They also own WPA Protocol, a subsidiary specializing in corporate healthcare trusts.

WPA health insurance coverage includes:

  • Insurance coverage for hospital and day patients
  • outpatient care
  • cancer treatment
  • NHS hospital allowance
  • 24/7 access to a private family doctor hotline
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Private transport by ambulance
  • Home care

WPAThey have settled a total of £800m in claims over the last 10 years and have also managed to maintain an impressive average customer service rating of 4.7 out of 5 on Trustpilot.

How to find the best private healthcare in the UK

These are just ten of the most well known providers but as mentioned above there are hundreds of insurers operating in the UK all offering different products and policies.

You can do your own research, but it takes a lot of time and effort! Ideally, you should seek advice from someone with experience. An independent insurance broker can find you the best private health insurance without the stress of searching the internet for the information you need.

If you're interested in enlisting the help of an insurance broker to find the right private health insurance plan, Hooray Health and Protection can help.

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Our team of industry experts strive to make insurance easy for our customers and are happy to answer any questions you may have about itPrivate health insurance. Click on "Talk to us" on the right or give us a call01273 222805.


Who is the best private health care provider UK? ›

Our in-depth health insurance review of the top providers in the UK
  • WPA. Our Rating: 9.7/10. ...
  • The Exeter. Our Rating: 9.6/10. ...
  • Bupa. Our Rating: 9.5/10. ...
  • Vitality. Our Rating: 9.5/10. ...
  • Axa Health. Our Rating: 9.3/10. ...
  • Freedom Health Insurance. Our Rating: 9.2/10. ...
  • Aviva. Our Rating: 9/10. ...
  • National Friendly. Our Rating: 8.8/10.
Mar 5, 2023

What is the biggest private healthcare company in the UK? ›

HCA Healthcare in the UK

Today HCA is the largest private healthcare provider in the world, and one of the leading private healthcare providers in the UK. Its founding philosophy of putting patients first has guided it every day since 1968.

Are there private healthcare providers in the UK? ›

Though the public system dominates healthcare provision in England, private health care and a wide variety of alternative and complementary treatments are available for those willing and able to pay.

How many private healthcare providers are there in the UK? ›

There are an estimated 515 private hospitals offering health care services in the U.K., a mixture of for-profit and nonprofit.

Which is the best health care in the UK? ›

Leading NHS areas with the best ranked healthcare in the UK 2022. In 2022, NHS Northumberland CCG ranked highest in the United Kingdom with a health index score of 73.7, followed by North Yorkshire CCG and South Tyneside CCG with scores of 73.6 and 69.6 respectively.

Who are the 5 biggest private companies in the UK by number of revenue? ›

25 Largest British Companies by Revenue
  • BAE Systems Plc. 2021 Revenue: £19.5 billion. ...
  • BT Group Plc. 2021 Revenue: £21.331 billion. ...
  • Prudential Plc. 2022 Revenue: $26.5 billion according to Forbes or £21.4 billion under current exchange rates. ...
  • Barclays. ...
  • Linde Plc. ...
  • British American Tobacco Plc. ...
  • AstraZeneca Plc. ...
  • Ernst & Young Global.
Jan 28, 2023

What is the biggest health board in the UK? ›

It is the largest health board in both Scotland, and the UK, which consists of the Council Areas of the City of Glasgow, East Dunbartonshire, East Renfrewshire, Inverclyde, Renfrewshire and West Dunbartonshire.
NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde
8 more rows

Is private healthcare in the UK worth it? ›

Whether you think private health insurance is good value for money is entirely a personal choice. For many people, there's no more worthwhile investment than their healthcare. Meanwhile, others are happy to exclusively rely on the NHS (though do remember you can still use the NHS when you're insured).

Is private health better in the UK? ›

The NHS is an excellent option for those who want quality care at a low cost but it has significant issues in terms of funding and oversubscription. Private treatment, on the other hand, is a great choice if you are looking for excellent facilities, short waiting times and a more personalised service.

Is private healthcare in UK cheaper than us? ›

Treatment costs in the USA are a lot more than private surgery costs here in the UK, with cancer-related treatments costing up to five times more in the USA than if you were being treated privately in the UK.

What percentage of Brits have private health insurance? ›

Nevertheless in 2019, 10.3 percent of the population bought supplemental private insurance, this is mostly due to long waiting times in public care. This statistic shows the percentage of population covered by public or private health insurance scheme in the United Kingdom from 2000 to 2019.

Can a US citizen get free healthcare in UK? ›

IMPORTANT: Anyone in the UK can receive treatment at an NHS facility, no matter their residency status. However, tourist visitors to the UK do not typically qualify for free NHS treatment. Any care beyond emergency treatment and certain other services will likely incur a fee.

How much does private health care cost UK? ›

According to ActiveQuote and BoughtByMany the average price for an individual private health insurance policy is £1,115 a year (as of October 2021) – but there are many factors that can make the price go up or down.

What is the poshest private hospital in the UK? ›

Regularly featured on television on both Sky News and Bloomberg, Weymouth Street Hospital has been described as “probably the country's plushest ever private hospital”.

How do I choose a private doctor UK? ›

Private healthcare: How to choose the right consultant
  1. Check their qualifications and experience. ...
  2. Check expert and patient reviews. ...
  3. Contact the relevant professional associations. ...
  4. Talk to your consultant or specialist. ...
  5. Check with your private medical insurance company. ...
  6. CMA compliance.
Sep 27, 2022

What is the most advanced hospital in the UK? ›

Top 100 Hospitals
RankOrganisation NameHCPS
1Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust6,636
2Yeovil District Hospital NHS Foundation Trust6,057
3Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust6,004
4Ashford and St. Peter's Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust5,933
96 more rows

Does the US have better healthcare than the UK? ›

The government also has a hand on the ambulance services, nursing, community, health education and the quality. While, statistically, England is faring better than the US regarding healthcare systems and policies, there is still some major issues that stem from this National Health Service.

Which is better for medical US or UK? ›

The US and the UK both have excellent medical school programs. While they differ a bit in structure, the time it takes to become a doctor is similar in either country.

Where does US rank in healthcare? ›

Overall Ranking of Health Care System Performance in 11 Industrialized Nations
United States11
7 more rows

What are the largest UK private companies by revenue? ›

Shell had by far the highest annual revenue of all companies based in the United Kingdom in 2022, at approximately 261.76 billion U.S. dollars. BP had the second highest annual revenue at 158.01 billion U.S. dollars, followed by Tesco which had a revenue of 84.17 billion U.S. dollars.

What is the most successful private company? ›

For 2021, revenues at Minnesota-based Cargill hit a record high of $165 billion. Koch earned its second place spot with $120 billion in revenues.
  • Cargill. Minnesota. ...
  • Koch Industries. Kansas. ...
  • Publix Super Markets. Florida. ...
  • Mars. Virginia. ...
  • Pilot Company. Tennessee. ...
  • H-E-B. Texas. ...
  • Reyes Holdings. ...
  • C&S Wholesale Grocers.
Dec 1, 2022

What are the most successful companies in Great Britain? ›

The rest of the UK's biggest companies
  • Shell (LSE:SHEL) ...
  • Unilever (LSE:ULVR) ...
  • HSBC (LSE:HSBA) ...
  • BP (LSE:BP) ...
  • Diageo (LSE:DGE) ...
  • British American Tobacco (LSE:BATS) ...
  • Rio Tinto (LSE:RIO) ...
  • Glencore (LSE:GLEN)
Jan 6, 2023

Which country is no 1 health care system in the world? ›

Take a look at this list to find out. The latest Best Countries rankings examined how people around the globe perceive the quality of the healthcare system in their countries of residence, and found Denmark to be perceived as having the most well-developed public healthcare system in the world.

What country has the best healthcare for seniors? ›

The Countries With the Best Elderly Care
  • Norway. With its strong sense of community, 100% pension coverage and financial security for the elderly, it's no wonder that Norway is consistently found in the number one spot. ...
  • Sweden. ...
  • Switzerland. ...
  • Germany. ...
  • Canada. ...
  • The US. ...
  • Great Britain. ...
  • Staggered care systems.
Dec 3, 2021

Which European country has the best healthcare system? ›

Luxembourg has one of the best state-funded healthcare systems in Europe, providing all citizens with basic medical coverage and giving them the option to choose their doctor, specialist, and hospital.

What are the high secure hospitals in the UK? ›

There are three high secure hospitals in England & Wales: Broadmoor, Rampton and Ashworth.

Which is the biggest NHS trust in England? ›

Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust is an NHS Acute Foundation Trust which operates 10 hospitals throughout Greater Manchester. It is the largest NHS trust in the United Kingdom, with an income of £1.6bn and 21,945 staff.
Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust
Staff21,945 (2018/19)
6 more rows

How big is private healthcare in the UK? ›

Roughly 11 per cent of the UK population has some form of private medical insurance.

Why is the UK healthcare system better than the US? ›

In the UK, a national system of healthcare, paid for by all citizens through taxes, provides a universal safety net. The US has settled for a complicated mix of private insurance and government subsidized programmes, often managed by private companies. The result is not just whether one has or does not have insurance.

What are the disadvantages of private health insurance? ›

Disadvantages of private health insurance

Coverage comes at a cost, and premiums increase yearly. Depending on your policy, you may not be covered for the treatment you require. It's important to take your time in choosing the right level of cover.

Why do people use private healthcare in the UK? ›

Private healthcare offers patients the benefit of choice. Whether it be choice of hospital, treatment and drugs (many not offered on the NHS due to costs), time and location that is convenient for patients. All help to provide a tailored healthcare service.

Are private doctors better than NHS doctors? ›

Many people wonder if private healthcare is better than the NHS. While there are definitely advantages to going private, the truth is that the standard of care is the same. All doctors, regardless of where they work, are required to do what's right in all circumstances and bound by the same strict regulations.

Is private GP better than NHS? ›

Due to this, many are left wondering “are private hospitals better than the NHS?” However, this is simply untrue. The standard of care and expertise a patient can expect from an NHS or private hospital is exactly the same.

Is private healthcare faster than NHS? ›

In private care, you are usually seen within a week or so of your GP requesting a referral, and tests are arranged within a few days. With the NHS on the other hand, you have a limited choice and the waiting lists for seeing a specialist can be very lengthy.

Is healthcare more expensive in the US or in the UK? ›

USA healthcare is 7.5 times more expensive than in the UK.

Why is private healthcare so expensive in the UK? ›

Private hospitals and clinics have to have many more specialist staff, such as consultants and surgeons, anaesthetists and theatre nurses. They need to ensure they are able to treat people on demand, without long waiting lists, and give them the individual time and attention they need.

Are US doctors better than UK doctors? ›

I'm guessing you are an American and you might not like to hear the true answer to your question but UK (and most European) Doctors (and especially surgeons) are generally regarded as better than those in the US because they train for longer under a more stringent regime and they specialise later.

How many US citizens have private health care? ›

Private Health Insurance

In 2021, these markets covered an estimated 179 million individuals (54.7% of the U.S. population) and 45 million individuals (13.7% of the U.S. population), respectively. In 2021, private health insurance expenditures accounted for $1,211 billion (29.9% of overall HCE).

Which country spends the most on private health care? ›

In 2021, the United States had the highest per capita health expenditure among OECD countries. At that time, per capita health expenditure in the U.S. amounted to 12,318 U.S. dollars, significantly higher than in Germany, the country with the second highest per capita health expenditure.

Is surgery free in UK? ›

Hospital treatment is free of charge for people who are ordinarily resident in the UK. This does not depend on nationality, payment of UK taxes, National Insurance contributions, being registered with a GP, having an NHS number, or owning property in the UK.

How can an American get health care in the UK? ›

For UK Healthcare, Get an NHS Number and a General Practitioner. Foreign residents in the U.K. must have an NHS number to make routine appointments with a General Practitioner (GP). To get an NHS number, international residents must register with a GP or make an appointment with their local health authority.

Can I use US health insurance in UK? ›

A U.S. health insurance plan will likely not cover any medical costs in the U.K. While traveling, there's always a risk of illness or injury, so a travel insurance policy with travel medical insurance is essential for international travel.

Who is the best private healthcare provider in the UK? ›

Our in-depth health insurance review of the top providers in the UK
  • WPA. Our Rating: 9.7/10. ...
  • The Exeter. Our Rating: 9.6/10. ...
  • Bupa. Our Rating: 9.5/10. ...
  • Vitality. Our Rating: 9.5/10. ...
  • Axa Health. Our Rating: 9.3/10. ...
  • Freedom Health Insurance. Our Rating: 9.2/10. ...
  • Aviva. Our Rating: 9/10. ...
  • National Friendly. Our Rating: 8.8/10.
Mar 5, 2023

How much tax do you pay on private healthcare UK? ›

To calculate how much, you need to apply your personal income tax rate band (20% for basic rate, 40% for higher rate or 45% for additional rate) to the taxable value of the benefit, which HMRC defines as the cash equivalent.

What does private healthcare get you in the UK? ›

Health insurance can get you access to new drugs or specialist treatments that aren't yet available on the NHS, and you'll often be treated faster. Private healthcare can offer you choice, as well as comforts like a private room, or treatment in your local private hospital.

How do I find a good private doctor UK? ›

How to choose a consultant
  1. Check their qualifications and experience. ...
  2. Checking expert and patient reviews. ...
  3. Safety records. ...
  4. Contact the relevant professional association. ...
  5. Check their reputation. ...
  6. Ask your consultant/specialist. ...
  7. Ask your private medical insurance company. ...
  8. CMA compliance.

How do you check if a doctor is genuine UK? ›

The medical register is a list of doctors in the United Kingdom, showing their registration status, training and other useful information.
Search the medical register
  1. Doctor's GMC number.
  2. Doctor's given name.
  3. Doctor's last name.

Who are the best doctors in the UK? ›

Medical specialists – Top Doctors UK
  • Dr Ramsohoye, Robin. Dentistry.
  • Dr Heidari-Robinson, Neggin. Dentistry.
  • Mr Morapudi, Syam. Orthopaedic surgery.
  • Dr Povolotskaya, Natalia. Obstetrics & gynaecology.
  • Mr Chawla, Jagmohan. Ophthalmology.

How much does it cost to see a consultant privately UK? ›

The cost of a private general practice services consultation without health insurance typically costs £200-£300 at a private hospital or clinic in the UK.

What is the disadvantage of private healthcare? ›

As you might expect, the greatest disadvantage of private health insurance can be the cost. This is especially true if you are in poor health and do not have access to group coverage of any kind. Many individual policies can cost several hundred dollars a month, and family coverage can be even higher.

Why do doctors prefer private practice? ›

Doctors in private practices aren't required to follow hospital regulations or guidelines when it comes to administrative or care decisions in their work. You'll have full autonomy on decisions like which software to use or whether to offer payment plan options.

Why go private instead of NHS? ›

With that being said, the overall treatment experience of Private GP and healthcare services can be of faster access, better facilities, and a wider range of available treatment options. Our Private GP facilities are modern and comfortable, with fast access to longer and more personalised consultations.


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