Private health cover up 0.3%

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Demand for private health and medical cover was “solid” in 2012, an analysis of the market has suggested, although the continuing weakness of the UK economy has prompted more employers to seek savings on their health cover.

Research by healthcare intelligence provider Laing and Buisson calculated that spending on insured and self-insured private medical cover grew during 2012 by 0.3% in real terms to reach £4.4 billion.

Claims paid on private medical cover policies rose by 0.7% in real terms, driven upwards by a strong rise of 7.8% in the value of claims paid by employers that self-insure their medical expenses, it added.

The report author and economist Philip Blackburn said: “At a time when the economy is struggling to grow at all, solid demand for private medical cover offers the industry a clear chink of light that growth is likely to move forwards when the economy wheels start to turn faster.”

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