Bupa confirms it will pay a total of £125m to customers hit by disruption to private medical services at the height of the pandemic
- Bupa pledged last year to pay back any ‘exceptional financial benefit’
- Most eligible Bupa customers will get around one month’s premium payment
Bupa has confirmed it will fork out a total of £125million to eligible customers affected by ‘temporary’ disruption to some private healthcare services during the pandemic last year.
In 2020, Bupa announced it planned to pay back any exceptional financial benefit it saw as a result of coronavirus to its health insurance customers.
From April this year, eligible individual Bupa customers, and small and large business customers funding health insurance for their staff, can expect to receive a payment equivalent to around one month’s premium.
Payment: Bupa has confirmed it will fork out a total of £125million to eligible customers affected by ‘temporary’ disruption to some private healthcare services in 2020
While the ‘vast majority’ of affected customers look set to receive the equivalent of around a month’s premium, some may get ‘more or less’ depending on certain calculations and whether or not premiums were paid in full or for part of the time when private treatment disruption was at its peak.
Alex Perry, chief executive of Bupa UK Insurance said: ‘We are determined to do the right thing for our customers. From the start of the pandemic we invested heavily in providing new and additional healthcare services from home, such as our Digital GP service, to help people access the care they need.
‘Thankfully many of the face-to-face services that were impacted were delayed rather than cancelled. More and more customers have been accessing health services as they resumed.
‘We were the first major health insurer to commit to a customer rebate and are now acting on this pledge. As an organisation without shareholders our customers come first, and we continue to support them throughout these times.’
Bupa said the one-off payment to eligible customers formed part of its wider package of measures aimed at helping people with their health at home.
Promise: Aviva and Axa have both promised to rebate any profit made as a result of reduced services during the pandemic
The group, which is one of the biggest health insurers in the country and is privately owned, expanded the range of health services that customers could access from home including telephone and video consultations with nurses, GPs and consultants.
It also bolstered its ‘chemotherapy at home’ services for cancer patients during the pandemic.
At the height of the pandemic last year, many private healthcare facilities were only able to offer patients limited services, prompting concerns that insurance firms would continue to rake in premiums while customers were left without viable options.
Aviva and Axa have both promised to rebate any profit made as a result of reduced services during the pandemic.
Not-for-profit insurer WPA has already provided affected customers with rebates worth around 40 per cent of their monthly premiums amid disruption last year.