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Jump in numbers changing minds on health insurance deals


Health Insurance expert Dermot Goode

Health Insurance expert Dermot Goode

Health Insurance expert Dermot Goode

Health insurers have been hit by a surge of people seeking to change their minds after signing up for a policy for another year.

Thousands of families have now realised that they can revise their decision, and opt for a different deal within 14 days of agreeing to a new policy.

Up to recently most people had not been aware of this 14-day "cooling-off period".

Families have been reacting after being encouraged by this newspaper to switch health provider, and other services, to avail of deals worth up to €2,000 a year.

This month is one of the busiest for health insurers, with around 400,000 consumers due to renew their cover.

Health insurance expert Dermot Goode said many people who had already agreed to a new one-year deal were now seeking to make changes within their 14-day cooling-off period.

He said many people who renewed on January 1 had signed up for the same policy they had last year, despite this costing up to €1,500 more for a family of two adults and two children.

These people now realise they still have time to opt for a cheaper policy.

Health insurers are bracing themselves for a busy day tomorrow, as it will be the last day for those who were due to renew on January 1, to act within their cooling-off period to get a better offer.

"Insurance companies thought those due to renew in the first week of January were done and dusted. But thousands of people are now realising they can revise their earlier decisions as they are within their cooling-off period," said Mr Goode, of TotalHealthCover.ie.

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A family could save €1,400 by seeking out some of the better health policy deals in the market. A family of two adults and two children, insured on the VHI's Parent & Kids Options plan, will pay €3,991.

If the adults move to VHI's corporate plan, PMI 36 13, and put the children on One Plan Choice to avail of a 50pc discount offer, the family can reduce their overall cost to €2,599. This works out at a saving of €1,391.