WPA are one of the smaller health insurance providers in the market, but arguably one of the best, with great policies and even better customer service. In this article, we look at WPA's new policy, Complete Health, and explain what makes them different from the rest.
WPA is a not-for-profit company; they don't have shareholders, which means they can reinvest profits back into the business to the benefit of its members. WPA is a specialist health insurer (it's all they do), so they can focus their time, energy and resources on one type of insurance.
In July 2023, WPA bid farewell to its 14-year-old "Flexible Health" range of policies and replaced them with a new product called "Complete Health". Ironically, as we'll explain in this article, WPA Complete Health policies are more flexible than the previous Flexible Health counterparts.
Before we get too much into the nitty-gritty of the policies, we want to draw your attention to WPA's excellent customer service levels.
WPA currently enjoys a rating of 4.7* out of 5 on Trustpilot from 2,292 reviews (August 2023), which is higher than any insurer we've reviewed. They also tell us that, on average, calls are answered in less than three minutes, and 97% of claims are authorised based on data from July 2023.
This starkly contrasts some other insurers in the market that have been struggling with the sheer weight of new customers in the past couple of years. We've heard via brokers that waiting times at some insurers have been hitting above 45 minutes regularly, which is unacceptable and creates undue stress for customers. So, we'd suggest that when comparing health insurance policies, you look beyond the benefits, cost and terms and factor customer reviews into your decision-making process.
In addition to the excellent customer service levels, WPA also stands out when it comes to their hospital list and specialist access. With WPA, you get unrestricted access to any private medical consultant or specialist in the UK within some fair monetary limits. They also have one of the best standard hospital lists in the market, with only high-end hospitals, often found in central London, being excluded unless you opt for the Premium hospitals extra.
One of the most significant changes with WPAs new policies is the introduction of choice between a no-claims discount and sharing the risk with others in your pool.
Pooled risk is similar to a community rating in that the losses of the few are met by the many. With a pooled risk policy, your individual claims won't directly affect your renewal premiums. It's the claims of everyone in your "pool" that determines price changes.
What's new for WPA is the introduction of a no-claims discount option, which aligns them with others in the market. People often prefer having control over their own destiny, and many take pride in building their no-claims discounts and reaping the rewards.
We're not here to say which is better, it's a personal decision, but it's great that WPA now gives you that choice.
This review focuses on WPA's new flagship policy, Complete Health, which offers good core benefits but can be enhanced by adding a range of optional add-ons.
Here are the core benefits of WPA's Complete Health policies:
So the above is a good start, but we know many of you will be wondering about things like Cancer Cover, Mental Health Cover and a bigger outpatient limit. The good thing with WPA Complete Health is that you can choose from a lengthy list of extras and, importantly, only pay for the things you'd like.
WPA's optional Cancer care cover provides comprehensive treatment options with no financial limits and is designed to cover you from initial tests to diagnosis, treatment and palliative care. There's no time limit on their support regarding follow-up scans and consultations, and you'll also receive personalised support from their specially trained teams.
While seeing a small amount of outpatient cover in the core product is good, £250 won't be enough for many. WPA are keen to make Complete Health as flexible as possible and help you avoid paying for things you don't need, so their outpatient extras are split into three, Consultations, Therapy and Tests.
You can choose one, two or all three and then decide for each what limit you'd like applied, from £500 to unlimited. So, for example, you may want excellent coverage of diagnostic consultations and testing and therefore opt for unlimited cover for those. But, you're happy to pay for physio and acupuncture yourself if you need it, so you opt out of Therapy cover. You get what's important to you and avoid paying for unimportant things.
All WPA Complete Health policies include up to six structured counselling sessions for those over 16s; however, to access wider mental health services, like psychiatrists and psychologists, you'd need to add on the Mental health care extra.
Please see the IPID document towards the end of this guide for more detail about what this includes.
In line with WPA wanting to give you more control over your policy, they are now splitting out four types of cash benefits, which previously would have come as one.
You can choose between two levels of cover for each of the following:
The great thing about splitting these out is that if you've always had good eyes and rarely go to the opticians, you opt out of that alone while still getting cash benefits for some of the others. The choice is up to you, but, importantly, you know you won't be paying for something you're unlikely to use.
Cash benefits are a set monetary amount you can claim towards specific treatments or consultations each year. They often cover some or all of the cost of routine appointments with your dentist or optician.
In addition to the above, you can go further and tailor your policy more with the following:
As with any health insurance, there are some standard and more specific exclusions. For a complete list, please see later in this review where we share WPA's policy guides, detailing their exclusions in full. These are their standard exclusions:
When it comes to underwriting, you have a few options with WPA health insurance:
Overall we think that WPA’s health insurance along with the customer service and approach to claims is one of if not the best available in the UK in 2023.
Disclaimer: This information is general and what is best for you will depend on your personal circumstances. Please speak with a financial adviser or do your own research before making a decision.
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*Based on 461 quotes between 01/22-01/23