At Benenden we conduct regular independent research seeking to understand the views of our members in relation to the services we provide. Our aim is to provide services which our members value and do so in a way that is in keeping with the ethos of the society. Recent research has highlighted opportunities for some improvements to our healthcare membership. Therefore, we aim to enhance communication around the services we offer, the manner in which they are offered and increase the value of some of these services.
Our new guide to Benenden Healthcare will be available from the 1st April 2018 and our members will be issued a copy prior to this date. The guide aims to provide enhanced clarity around our discretionary services, the specific services available to members and how these services can be requested.
We are increasing the amount of money members can spend when we authorise a diagnostic case from £1,500 to £1,800. This increase reflects rising costs of gaining diagnosis and provides confidence to our members that we can support them to achieve a diagnosis. In 2017 our members spent an average of £624 when authorised for diagnostic support and 80% of members spent under £1,000.
From April 2018 members will no longer need to seek a referral from an NHS GP prior to requesting physiotherapy from us. Any member who believes they would benefit from physiotherapy will be able to request the service directly from us and if authorised we will arrange a telephone appointment with our chartered physiotherapists. If our physiotherapist determines that the member will benefit from physiotherapy they will then arrange an appropriate appointment.
From day one our members have access to our GP 24/7 advice which provides access to a GP at any time day or night. A highly valuable service given the challenges many members face accessing NHS GP appointments. We are enhancing this service in two ways:
We are making clear to members that they can use GP 24/7 for advice about themselves, and dependents such as children, partner or parents even if they aren't Benenden members.
If a prescription is required we will be able to offer a private prescription service to members. Medication will be posted directly to the member. Separate charges apply for the prescription and members will be asked to pay the online pharmacy directly
We hope these changes to our service enhance the clarity of Benenden Healthcare and enhance the service we provide to you. Through 2018 we will continue to conduct regular independent research into the experience of our members and would encourage all members to take part in this research if they are requested to do so.