National Friendly moves to support mental health needs
In a separate study, Agenda, the alliance for women and girls at risk, reports that 75% of mental health issues are established before the age of 24, whilst for National Friendly, the average age of a claimant is more likely to be between the ages of 40 and 50.
Commenting on this pattern, Wayne Carter, Head of Sales and Marketing at National Friendly thinks, "Whilst the evidence presented by organisations such as Agenda points to an issue emerging early in a woman's life, we as insurers tend not to see that manifesting itself as a claim until much later on. We cannot say for sure why this is, but it could be because of the perceived difficulty of trying to access professional support via the NHS as a younger person. Older adults may be more likely to have the confidence and life skills to be able to act to seek help."
Not all private medical insurance policies include mental health cover, but National Friendly's Optimum Out-patient Plan does, and moreover, mental health care can be accessed without the patient having to go via their GP, saving valuable time. According to a report from the Royal College of Psychiatrists published last year, a quarter of the 500 patients who took part in their survey drawn from across the UK, waited more than three months to see a NHS mental health specialist. Six per cent had waited at least a year.
Wayne Cater added, "Not only can insurers such as ourselves offer a simpler route to mental health care support, it can also be substantially faster than waiting for NHS care, which in turn can help to alleviate suffering."
National Friendly was founded to provide sickness benefits for its members and today offers a range of innovative insurance and savings products. Details of National Friendly and its insurance policies are available on its website: www.nationalfriendly.co.uk/
Editor notes/data sources
For further information on National Friendly, please contact:
Guy Stephenson/Erica Evans
Tel: +44 (0)20 8333 9125
About National Friendly
Based in Bristol, National Friendly is a mutual organisation which is solely owned by its members.
Established in 1868, it has no shareholders and exists to serve the best interests of its 32,000 (as at December 2017) members.
National Friendly is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.
Its vision is to be a forward-thinking and trusted mutual that meets the health, welfare and protection needs of its customers, through a portfolio of innovative insurance products.
For more information please visit www.nationalfriendly.co.uk
*95% of claims are based in England.