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Rise in patients self-funding their orthopaedic surgery to avoid NHS waiting lists

It is common knowledge that the NHS is under immense pressure and that waiting lists for treatment can extend beyond one year - in some cases, even beyond three. This time scale is especially true for patients needing orthopaedic surgery.

As a result, many patients have been taking it upon themselves to pay for this type of treatment. The Private Healthcare Information Network (PHIN) found that self-funded hip replacements rose by 167% in July and September 2021, whilst self-funded knee replacements leapt by 127%.

They estimate that 4,800 people self-funded their hip replacements in 2021, compared to 1,800 in 2019.

Many of these patients pay out of their own pockets for treatment, as they don't have medical insurance. The number of patients with cover fell by 16% during the same period - this indicates there is work to be done around educating previous NHS patients on the ins and outs of paying for private care.

Although NHS staff are starting to tackle the list of patients waiting for one, two or even three years for treatment, pressures facing the public healthcare sector don't show signs of stopping. As long as patients have to wait for treatment through the NHS, the number of patients seeking private care will only continue to rise.

As a hospital or consultant in this sector, it’s even more important for you to seek out comprehensive medical indemnity insurance amidst this rise in demand for private healthcare services.

At Practition, we help our clients to improve their risk profiles, learn from past clinical errors and refine their overall patient safety mechanisms. We pride ourselves on our market-leading in-house medical negligence, regulatory and governance healthcare expertise, and our specialist Healthcare Insurance Team is one of the biggest in the UK.

We offer the optimum insurance programme, effective claims management, added value over traditional insurance broking, and financial savings.

If you WANT to protect yourself and improve the quality of your offering to patients, we would love to help. Get in touch to speak to a friendly member of the Practition team.

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