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Protect what you value the most…..and that should be your health !

Your health is one of the most important things in your life and your most valuable asset and it stands to reason that it should be protected.

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Why compare health insurance with us?

If you’re muddled and you want to find the best health insurance cover for you, you’ve come to the right place and we are here to help! At we like to make comparing health insurance an easy and straight forward job, helping you to find the best health insurance plan available for you or your family in the market place today. Our links provide a collection of health insurance plans available in the irish market place from some of Ireland’s top health insurance providers and put them all in one place for you to choose from.

What is Health Insurance?

Taking out private health insurance is more popular than ever, but what is it andhow much cover do I need? We discuss a few of these points here.

We all benefit from “free” healthcare in Ireland through the public system, and taking out health insurance cover can give you with extra support, convenience,speed and comfort should you need it.

Private medical insurance shouldn’t be seen as a replacement for the Irish public hospital system but rather an add-on to speed up and complement the care you automatically receive.

Private health insurance generally covers the cost of in-patient treatment – things such as tests, surgery and day-care – and out-patient treatment.It also covers you for some private hospitals depending on the plan and  will vary considerably in what is covered and what is excluded.

It’s important that you compare all the health insurance plans to make sure you get the cover you want, and not just the price. How comprehensive a policy is will be the major determinant of price, but in general there is a basic level of cover offered by even the cheapest policies.

What is covered by health insurance?

Few if any private medical insurance policies will cover treatment for illness or injury pre-dating your cover.

Health insurance is generally intended for short-term, curable illness or injury (known as ‘acute’), rather than ongoing conditions, and more often than not for things that can be cured without lengthy medical procedures.

By taking out private health insurance it is possible to cut standard waiting times and choose where and how you are treated, and sometimes get private rooms as opposed to a semi-private or public wards in public hospitals.

The thinking is that through these measures your treatment for and recovery from various conditions will both be as quick as comfortable as possible.

Many policies will cover extra things like diagnostic treatment,mri scans, radiotherapy and chemotherapy and physiotherapy.

It is very important to compare the different health insurance plans to see exactly what is offered.

Lifetime Community Rating Explained

Lifetime community rating is a system whereby the premium that individuals pay for health insurance rises with the age they enter the private health insurance market, but does not vary in relation to their current age. Under this system, a 50 year old who has held insurance since he or she was 30 would pay the same as a 30 year old, but a 50 year old who purchases insurance for the first time would pay more than a 30 year old.

What is Lifetime Community Rating?

Lifetime community rating modifies community rating so that the premium that individuals pay for health insurance increases with the age at which they enter the private health insurance market. It does not vary in relation to their current age.

Under this system, a 50 year old who has held insurance since he or she was 30 would pay the same as a 30 year old, but a 50 year old who purchases insurance for the first time would pay more than a 30 year old.

Why is Lifetime Community Rating being introduced?

Community rated markets depend on a continuing influx of younger people. Younger people claim less on average and, accordingly, a continuing influx of younger people keeps premiums down for everybody. Conversely, if people wait until they are older before taking out private health insurance, premiums will increase for everybody.

Lifetime Community Rating encourages people to join the private health insurance (PHI) market at a younger age and this will help in controlling premium inflation.

When is lifetime community rating being introduced?

Loadings will apply to people aged higher than 34 taking out inpatient private health insurance for the first time after 30 April 2015.

What loadings will apply?

A loading of 2% of the gross premium will apply for every year of age higher than age 34 that an individual has attained when they first purchase inpatient private health insurance after 30 April 2015.

Will I have to pay a loading for the rest of my life?

Yes, the loading will apply throughout life when a person purchases inpatient health insurance after 30 April 2015.

What is a health insurance cash plan?

A health insurance cash plan provides monetary benefits for a range of medical events but unlike other private health insurance plans, health insurance cash plans do not provide inpatient cover for costs incurred in hospital as a private patient.

Are health insurance cash plans included in Lifetime Community Rating?

No. Loadings will not be applied to health insurance cash plans. If you do not hold an inpatient private health insurance plan by 30 April 2015 and you are over 34, a loading will be applied to any inpatient plans that you purchase after this date.

I am aged over 34 and I have never had health insurance, does that mean that I will have to pay a higher premium when I get it?

The Regulations provide for a grace period up until 30 April 2015. If you purchase inpatient private health insurance by that date and maintain your cover, then you will not pay a loading.

If you wait until after 30 April 2015 to purchase inpatient private health insurance, then you will have to pay a loaded higher premium. Also, if you purchase inpatient private health insurance by 30 April 2015, but then allow your cover to lapse you will pay a higher premium when you rejoin the market.

Purchasing a health insurance cash plan by 30 April 2015 will not prevent loadings if you then switch to an inpatient health insurance plan after 30 April 2015.

I have a health insurance cash plan and I am over age 34. Will a loading be applied to me if I switch to an inpatient private health insurance plan after 30 April 2015?

Yes. Health insurance cash plans are not included in Lifetime Community Rating, so if you do not hold an inpatient plan by 30 April 2015, a loading will be applied when you switch to, or purchase an inpatient private health insurance plan after this date.

Are my previous periods of inpatient cover taken into account in calculating the loading?

Yes, if you take out inpatient private health insurance after 30 April 2015, your previous periods of cover are taken into account in calculating the loading that will apply to you. Periods of cover held on a health insurance cash plan will not be taken into account for the purposes of calculating loadings.

I am 50 now, I had inpatient private health insurance for 5 years in my late 20s / early 30s and then I let it lapse. Will I have to pay a higher premium under Lifetime Community Rating, given that I first got insurance under age 35?

If you purchase inpatient private health insurance by 30 April 2015 and maintain your cover, you will not have to pay a higher premium. If you only purchase inpatient private health insurance after 30 April 2015 and are aged 35 or over, your insurer will calculate your age at entry under lifetime community rating. This will be your age when you are purchasing insurance less any previous periods of cover (in this example 50 – 5 = 45). You will pay the same loading as a 45 year old who is purchasing private health insurance for the first time, i.e. 22%.

I was covered under my parents’ policy for my whole childhood but it then lapsed. Will I get credit for this when calculating my Lifetime Community Rating loading?

No. Credit does not apply to periods of cover as a child.

What about people who have emigrated, will they have to pay the loading when they return?

Anybody who lives outside of the State on 1 May 2015 and moves to live in Ireland will have 9 months to purchase inpatient private health insurance avoiding the loading under Lifetime Community Rating.

How do I prove that I was not resident in Ireland on 1 May 2015 and moved to Ireland in the last 9 months?

The onus is on you to prove these facts to the insurer. This can be done for instance by providing copies of bank statements opened while abroad, evidence of accommodation lease arrangements or utility bills paid while abroad. Travel documentation or application for a PPS number would be accepted as proof of taking up residency in Ireland.

I had to give up my insurance because I couldn’t afford it any more after I lost my job. Is there any allowance made?

The Regulations include an allowance of up to three years for periods of unemployment after 1 January 2008. Effectively, such periods will be treated as if you did have insurance cover when calculating any premium loading.

What is the maximum loading that can apply?

The maximum loading that can apply is 70% of the gross premium in the event of a person aged 69 or older purchasing inpatient private health insurance for the first time.

Will all health insurers apply the loadings?

All insurers have to apply the loadings to their inpatient private health insurance plans.

What happens if I switch insurer?
Can I drop my health insurance for a period without a loading applying?

I am 45 year old and I am taking out health insurance for the first time on or after 1 May 2015. My community rating premium (after tax relief) is @1,000 per annum. What premium shall I pay including the lifetime community rating loading?

The annual premium is €1,000 plus €200 tax relief                          €1,200
The loading is 22% of the gross premium of €1,200                        €264
Gross premium including Lifetime Community Rating loading      €1,464
Tax relief of 20% gross premium limited to €200                              €200
Amount Payable                                                                                    €1,264

Source :The Health Insurance Authority .
The different providers in Ireland are:

Laya Healthcare
Vhi Healthcare
Aviva Health
HSF Health Plan


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Aviva Health, GloHealth, Laya Healthcare and Vhi price changes 01.05.2015.

The insurers price lists from 01.05.2015 can be found below:

Aviva price list 01.05.2015

GloHealth price list 01.05.2015

Laya Healthcare price list 01.05.2015

Vhi price list 01.05.2015

These changes will apply to all new and renewing customers from this date.



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