If you've searched the internet for private health insurance that covers shingles then you are probably for looking for trusted UK based health insurance companies that will cover shingles.
Our advice when looking for health insurance that covers shingles is to speak to a insurance broker. Health insurance is extremely complicated and if you want complete certainty that shingles is covered by your policy you should talk with a medical insurance broker who can explain which policy providers will cover this medical condition and which will not.
There are many advantages to using a broker but the biggest by far is that you're using their insurance training at no cost. They are paid by the insurer (Aviva or Bupa etc) rather than you so it costs you no extra to use their brokering services.
- Do you live in many different postcodes? Some will give you a cheaper premium than offers. A broker will be able to advise whats best.
- Do you have a hobby that may invalidate your insurance claim? A broker will know this vital information.
- If you are a couple and one of you has claimed on your policy this year would it be cheaper to separate you both onto two different policies?
- You've developed a certain medical condition and want to know which policy provider offers the largest amount of cover for it. A broker will know this instantly saving you huge amounts of time and effort.
You can call around every health insurance provider on the market and ask if they cover shingles, however this will be a very time consuming process. Each insurer will ask for your medical history because its not normally a simple yes or not if a medical condition is covered or not.
Its much quicker to speak to one health insurance broker which will know which providers on the market cover shingles and under what terms they do or don't cover it.
Shingles, also known as herpes zoster, is an infection of a nerve and the skin around it. It's caused by the varicella-zoster virus, which also causes chickenpox.
It's estimated that around one in every four people will have at least one episode of shingles during their life.
The main symptom of shingles is pain, followed by a rash that develops into itchy blisters, similar in appearance to chickenpox. New blisters may appear for up to a week, but a few days after appearing they become yellowish in colour, flatten and dry out.
Scabs then form where the blisters were, which may leave some slight scarring.
The pain may be a constant, dull or burning sensation and its intensity can vary from mild to severe. You may have sharp stabbing pains from time to time, and the affected area of skin will usually be tender.
In some cases, shingles may cause some early symptoms that develop a few days before the painful rash first appears. These early symptoms can include:
An episode of shingles typically lasts around two to four weeks, however in some cases the pain may last for many weeks once the rash has disappeared. Shingles usually affects a specific area on one side of the body and doesn't cross over the midline of the body (an imaginary line running from between your eyes down past the belly button).
Any part of your body can be affected, including your face and eyes, but the chest and abdomen (tummy) are the most common areas.
Pharmacy First Scotland: Shingles treatment from your local pharmacy
Adults 18 years and over with symptoms of shingles can get advice and treatment directly from a pharmacy. If the pharmacist cannot treat you they may recommend you see your GP.
Find your local pharmacy on Scotland's Service directory.
Shingles isn’t usually serious, but see your pharmacist as soon as possible if you recognise the symptoms. In most cases your pharmacist should be able to provide treatment, however they may recommend that you need to contact your GP practice for treatment if required.
You should see your GP if you are under 18 years old, pregnant or have a weakened immune system (the body's natural defence system) and you think you have been exposed to someone with chickenpox or shingles and haven't had chickenpox before.
Early treatment may help reduce the severity of your symptoms and the risk of developing complications.
It's uncommon for someone with shingles to be referred to hospital, but your GP may consider seeking specialist advice if: