More look to private health insurance as strikes and uncertainty hits UK’s healthcare system

Go.Compare has seen a 74% increase in people looking at private health insurance quotes in January 2023

As multiple strikes kick in across NHS services this week, Go.Compare has seen a dramatic jump in the number of people getting quotes for private health insurance.

New data from the comparison site has revealed that, in January 2023, the number of people getting quotes for health insurance has increased by 74%,* compared with the same time last year.

With nurses, physiotherapists, midwives and ambulance workers all due to take industrial action over the next few days, and an estimated 88,000 hospital appointments already cancelled in England in recent weeks,** it seems that Brits are looking to avoid the delays and disruption. 

Health insurance, or private medical insurance (PMI) covers the cost of private medical diagnosis and treatment for various conditions that are specified within a policy. Usually, those with private medical cover are seen and treated by medical professionals quicker than they would be through the NHS.

Go.Compare health insurance spokesperson, Matthew Sanders, said: “It’s no secret that the NHS has been struggling for quite some time – and the latest wave of healthcare strikes are highlighting the issues for those who work within the service, as well as those who depend on it.

“Looking over the past month, our data shows a significant increase in people looking at health insurance quotes – suggesting that not everyone is willing to wait for the NHS’ long-standing issues to improve.”

Matthew added: “If you aren’t sure what the cost of health insurance might be, remember that your premium will depend on a whole range of factors – and it may be less than you think. If you follow a healthy diet, exercise regularly and avoid smoking, this will likely mean you can benefit from cheaper medical insurance. And, if you can afford it, investing in private health insurance could mean you or your family member are seen and treated sooner if you become ill – therefore getting you back to work or education sooner.

“If you are considering health insurance, it’s important to look carefully at the policy details and make sure you get the coverage you need. Health insurance policies can vary widely, with some covering routine treatments such as health checks, surgery and overnight stays, and others offering more extensive benefits – such as mental health care and physiotherapy.

“We would always recommend taking some time to review different health insurance policies side-by-side, as this makes it easier to compare the finer points – as well as the overall cost.”

To learn more about the different types of health insurance, visit:


Contact Information

Rosie Johns

Notes to editors

*Data Source: Go.Compare Health Insurance Activations (conversions from Go.Compare to Active Quote), 01-31 January 2022 and 01-31 January 2023.


For further information please contact:

Lynsey Walden or Kath Chadwick at Go.Compare on or

Keep up-to-date with GoCompare on Twitter; @GoCompare

Notes to editors

*On 16th- 19th September 2022, a survey of 2091 randomly selected Great British adults was executed by Maru/Blue. For comparison purposes, a probability sample of this size has an estimated margin of error (which measures sampling variability) of +/- 2.1%. The results have been weighted by age, gender, region and social grade to match the population, according to Census data. This is to ensure the sample is representative of the entire adult population of Great Britain. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding. 

About Go.Compare

Go.Compare is a comparison website that enables people to compare the costs and features of a wide variety of insurance policies, financial products and energy tariffs.

It does not charge people to use its services and does not accept advertising or sponsored listings, so all product comparisons are unbiased. Go.Compare makes its money through fees paid by the providers of products that appear on its various comparison services when a customer buys through the site.

When it launched in 2006, it was the first comparison site to focus on displaying policy details rather than just listing prices, with the aim of helping people to make better-informed decisions when buying their insurance. It is this approach to comparing products that secured the company an invitation to join the British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) in 2008, and it is still the only comparison site to be a member of this organisation.

Go.Compare has remained dedicated to helping people choose the most appropriate products rather than just the cheapest and works with Defaqto, the independent financial researcher, to integrate additional policy information into a number of its insurance comparison services. This allows people to compare up to an extra 30 features of cover.

Go.Compare is part of Future Plc and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

More information can be found here or here