The positive benefits of exercise from both a physical and mental perspective are now well known. Exercise Referral is a really positive way to get motivational support to help improve the fitness, general health and overall quality of an individual’s life.
The Exercise Referral programmes involve 30 weeks of supported, gym-based activity specially tailored to individual needs. They are typically suitable for people looking to make lifestyle and diet changes under professional supervision.
These programmes can only be accessed via a GP. Speak to your GP about Exercise Referral, and ask to be referred or click here to download a referral form to take to your GP.
Rachel suffers from asthma and rheumatoid arthritis and was hoping that by becoming more active and fitter it would help improve his/her symptoms.
‘I joined the gym through a GP referral and enrolled with Slimming World also through a GP referral. I was initially given a programme to work to but as I gained confidence I had some personal training sessions. The gym is full of all people different shapes and sizes with different conditions so it shouldn’t feel like a daunting place to be. I feel at ease when I go there.
‘The support from the trainers at the gym has really helped me stick to my programme. They are very friendly and knowledgeable and put you at ease. Feeling fitter and having more energy made me go back for more’.
Anyone who has been diagnosed with an illness or medical problem will understand the importance of finding a specialist to treat them as soon as possible.
Feeling unwell can be stressful enough, without having to wait for appointments or tests. Unfortunately though, current NHS waiting lists means that it isn’t always as easy to be seen as one might like. This is why many people take out medical insurance to ensure they can receive treatment fast.
With most private medical insurance policies, you pay a monthly premium and the policy will then pay out, up to specified cover limits, for treatment you might need. Going private has the advantage that you can book appointments at a time that suits you – you could even see specialists in the evening or at the weekend.
AXA PPP healthcare, for example, offers a ‘Fast Track’ appointment service, which will find up to three appropriate specialists with expertise in the relevant condition, along with possible appointment dates and times to suit you. When referred by their GP, members can ask for an ‘open referral’, so that AXA PPP can help find appropriate specialists.
Laura Marshallsay, 50, found the service invaluable when she needed a hip replacement last summer. She said; “In January 2013, my husband and I moved from the US when his company offered him a job here. After settling into the UK, I ventured to the local GP surgery with hip pain triggered by lugging huge boxes.
“The doctor said that he could refer me to a specialist but didn’t know how long I’d wait for an appointment. I told him I had private health insurance and he suggested he give an open referral, which, with AXA, meant they could help me find a local specialist.”
Mrs Marshallsay contacted AXA and the following day received a call offering her a choice of appointment times for the end of that week with a specialist at her local hospital. She saw a consultant orthopaedic surgeon, who told her that she needed a hip replacement, and booked her in for surgery.
She said; “I called AXA PPP to let them know and, again any paperwork and payments were taken care of instantly. I didn’t have to do a thing. It turned out that the pain was caused by a condition that I was born with called hip dysplasia, where the ball and socket of the hip joint don’t fit snugly together, leading to wear and tear. I had no idea I had it until the scans revealed that I had severely damaged cartilage.”
Mrs Marshallsay had her operation on July 15 last year and stayed in hospital for a week, with physiotherapists working with her every day. Six weeks of hip classes in a hydrotherapy pool at the hospital were also covered by her healthcare company. She said: “I’m very grateful to AXA PPP’s Fast Track appointments for enabling me to see such a brilliant specialist, and for making the whole process so swift and stress free.”
Before buying medical insurance, find out exactly what benefits the policy you are interested in will pay out. If you opt for a very low cost plan, then the chances are it may only pay hospital admission costs, and not out-patient costs.
Some policies enable you to tailor your insurance to suit your needs. For example, AXA PPP’s cover provides the essentials as standard. It then gives the option to choose additional benefits to get the cover you want, including a choice of three different levels of out-patient covers. Finally, there are further options available such as adding a higher excess to reduce the cost of subscriptions. The excess is the part of any insurance claim you must pay yourself. As with all insurance policies you should always read the terms and conditions to find out what is not covered on your plan.
Remember that, as well as receiving treatment more quickly, opting for private healthcare has other benefits. These include your own private room, usually with an en-suite bathroom, as well as access to all the latest licenced drugs and proven treatment, which may not be routinely available from the NHS. Some plans also offer a second opinion service, so that if you aren’t sure about a diagnosis or treatment plan, the costs of a second opinion, such as the first appointment with the new specialist and any new tests, will also be covered.
AXA PPP healthcare can provide a wide-range of options for you and your family.
For more information about Fast Track Appointments and the benefits of private healthcare call 0800 5870953 for a free quote.
Lines are open 9am to 8pm weekdays. Calls may be recorded and/or monitored for quality assurance, training and as a record of conversation.
The Telegraph are introducing customers to AXA PPP healthcare to provide affordable health insurance to Telegraph readers.
To see how much a Private healthcare policy might cost you, use our short Online Quote and Buy calculator, or get a quote over the phone by calling us on 0800 587 0953.
Please click here for an online version of our benefits booklet