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Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Frequently asked questions

This information was updated on Thursday 2 April 2020 at 11am and is correct as of that date.
It’s important that you follow the Government’s advice if you think you may have Coronavirus, which can be found on the NHS website.
Vitality is operating normal service hours and you can Contact us in the usual ways. We additionally have robust business continuity plans in place if the situation changes.
 
Vitality is closely monitoring the situation as it develops, and is working to provide support where possible to our members.

Our GP Advice Line is available to all members who have clinical concerns about Coronavirus. Full details on how to access it can be found in Member Zone.
Would my life insurance claim for Coronavirus be eligible?
Should you pass away as a result of Coronavirus, or complications from the virus, a claim will be paid, as per the terms of your plan.

Am I eligible to claim for Coronavirus under my Serious Illness Cover (SIC) plan?
Serious Illness Cover (SIC) does not cover viruses such as Coronavirus specifically. Where the virus goes on to cause a Serious Illness as covered by the plan, you would be eligible to claim.

Can I claim under my Income Protection plan if I need to take time off work due to Coronavirus?
You can make a claim if you are unable to work due to having Coronavirus. This includes situations where medical quarantine is imposed by a doctor for Coronavirus, and where you are unable to perform your work duties whilst in quarantine. A claim can be made in line with the expiry of the deferred period, which will be detailed in the terms and conditions of your plan. You will not be eligible to claim on your Income Protection plan in the event that your work closes, or where you are unable to work due to social distancing or shutdowns in the general economy.

Are Vitality life insurance plans available to new members?
Yes, all of Vitality’s life insurance plans including life insurance, Serious Illness Cover and Income Protection continue to be available for new members.
Are Coronavirus tests available through Private Medical Insurance?
Testing for Coronavirus is not currently available through Vitality.

Can I use my health insurance plan for treatment if I get Coronavirus?
If you need to speak to someone in connection with Coronavirus, you should follow the latest government advice which can be found on the NHS website. Please note that health insurance in the UK does not cover urgent or emergency care. 

From 20 March 2020, a new COVID-19 Cashback benefit will be available for Vitality health insurance members who require a hospital stay due to Coronavirus. All Vitality health insurance members hospitalised due to COVID-19, will now be eligible to claim following an NHS hospital stay:

  • Days 1 to 8 – £250 per day.
  • Day 9 onwards - £500 per day. A person with a stay lasting 9 days or longer is more likely to need critical care for COVID-19, based on the latest evidence and research.
  • This is subject to a maximum of £5,000 overall.

This benefit is now available to all current members who have a Personal Healthcare (PHC), Business Healthcare (BHC) or Corporate Healthcare (CHC) plan with the benefit of Core Cover, for any admissions up to 30 June 2020. It is also available to new customers subject to a one-month waiting period.

If I go on to develop a secondary problem related to Coronavirus, would this be covered?
You will be covered for all eligible treatment needed in the future, in line with the terms and conditions of your plan.

Will the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic mean my private operation or treatment will be postponed or cancelled?

On 21 March 2020, NHS England announced that the private sector would support the NHS in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, providing additional staff, beds and critical care equipment.

This means there will be less capacity for private hospital treatment in the coming months. We are working closely with our hospital partners to continue to deliver treatment where possible for you, particularly within urgent care pathways. Furthermore, we are adapting our benefits and services to make greater use of technology and remote consultations where clinically appropriate, in line with government advice around social distancing and the need to reduce contact.


Will I be able to initiate new claims?
Yes, new claims can be registered as before. You can continue to receive uninterrupted, high-quality remote care with GPs, musculoskeletal (MSK) clinicians, mental health practitioners, as well as remote consultations with consultants (subject to terms and conditions).

We expect some private facilities to continue to provide private care, albeit on a reduced basis. Private facilities are expected to prioritise urgent care or where care cannot be safely delayed.

Where private treatment is available, you can initiate a claim, however treatment may not happen as rapidly as before due to the current pandemic. Where treatment is not immediately available, we will register the claim and fund care as soon as it is available (subject to the terms and conditions of the plan).

How can I access physiotherapy?
Remote physiotherapy treatment and self-management advice are available to self-refer to through our Priority Physio network without the need for a GP referral.

Currently face-to-face treatment will be postponed and is available digitally. In person treatment will be available at a later date, as soon as social distancing guidelines are lifted. We recently added a new physio partner to our network, Ascenti, who have expertise in remote treatment. Bookings can be made online through our new online Care Hub in the Member Zone.

How can I access mental health treatment?
Telephone and video mental health therapy and counselling is available through our Talking Therapies network.

Face-to-face treatment has been postponed and will be reinstated as soon as social distancing guidelines are lifted. You can access our range of leading mental health support services online, with a range available (depending on your plan), including Big White Wall (an anonymous online support service), Vitality Healthy Mind, and our GP Advice Line. All are available through the Member Zone.

Can I still see a specialist?
Through Vitality’s consultant network, you will be able to have specialist consultations by phone or video call where appropriate. Where specialists are providing face-to-face consultations, we will continue to cover these.

 
If I cannot access treatment through the private sector, would I be eligible to use the NHS?
Where treatment needs to be delayed, we will register the claim and cover this treatment as soon as private capacity becomes available.

Where urgent treatment is required and carried out through the NHS, you would benefit from Vitality NHS Cashback.

Will treatment continue for me if I am mid-claim?
If you are in a private care pathway which is urgent, such as cancer treatment, you will continue to receive care.

If you are scheduled for non-urgent and elective treatment, you will likely have your care postponed. This will depend on the provider, region and type of treatment, as these will all be affected by the pandemic in different ways. We expect this position to regularly change. If you have care booked, you should check with your consultant and/or hospital about whether this care is going ahead. Each healthcare provider will hold the most up-to-date information themselves.

Am I covered for overseas medical expenses as a result of Coronavirus?

You, and any insured dependants (an “insured member”), will be covered up to the limits of your plan (£10m) if you need hospital admission abroad, as long as you follow the latest UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advice. However: 

  • If, at the time of departure, the FCO are advising against all travel to the destination, you will not be covered
  • If, at the time of departure, the FCO are advising against all but essential travel to the destination, then you will not normally be covered. However, if you believe the trip is essential, and cannot be cancelled or postponed, then you should contact us. Whether we agree to cover you will be at our discretion
  • If the FCO advice changes during the trip, you will be covered until you return to the UK.

Am I covered for cancellation or curtailment of a trip due to the Coronavirus pandemic?

If you’ve previously booked a trip to a destination that has subsequently been affected by an outbreak of Coronavirus, and the FCO have now advised against all travel, or all but essential travel to the destination, your plan does cover the costs of cancelling the trip, up to £4,000 per insured member.

You should first look to recoup the costs from the flight and accommodation providers. If you can’t get refunds and you’ve booked your trip using a credit card, you may be able to claim under section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act. If you cannot obtain a refund in either of these ways, you can then register a claim with us to obtain refunds on the remaining costs, subject to the terms and conditions of the plan.

Am I covered for future bookings?

The purpose of the plan is to protect you against unforeseen events. As it’s now expected that there will be travel disruption to most destinations over the next few months, we won’t be providing cancellation and curtailment cover for any trips booked on or after Tuesday 17 March 2020, which are impacted by the Coronavirus outbreak.

As we’ve mentioned, any booking you’ve already made will continue to be covered under the cancellation and curtailment benefit, and we’ll continue to provide overseas medical expenses cover on any trip, subject to the guidance outlined above. Once the situation has stabilised, we’ll get back in touch with any updates we have.

How can I continue to get active and earn Vitality points and rewards? 
Given the restrictions currently imposed on the UK around social distancing, we have introduced Vitality at Home – a new set of partner benefits and rewards. These new benefits will help you to continue to earn Vitality points. Through Vitality at Home, you will be able to access home workouts through the Peloton and Jennis apps. If you track your activity with a linked device, you’ll automatically earn Vitality points for completing the following workouts: 

  • Peloton: 5 Vitality points for a workout that is 20 minutes or longer for strength, yoga, stretching, cardio and boot camp workouts
  • Jennis: 5 Vitality points for a workout that is 20 minutes or longer

We have also introduced a new Active Reward with Rakuten TV where you can stream up to two films a week with Rakuten TV. You’ll need to earn 12 Vitality points in a week to qualify for your first film voucher, and 40 Vitality points for your second film voucher. To also support you in eating healthily during this time, eligible members will also receive a flat 25% off Waitrose & Partners’ Good Health range (40% if you have multiple eligible products with Vitality and are receiving boosted Vitality Pink rewards) for spend in April, May and June 2020. This is now available irrespective of how many Vitality points you earn over the respective period. 

Full details on all benefits and rewards will be released in Member Zone during April 2020.

Will my Vitality status and Vitality Healthcheck be affected if I need to self-isolate?
You’ll be able to stay active and earn Vitality points through both steps and heart-rate activity, helped also by the new Vitality at Home benefits available to you. 

However, to further support you during these unprecedented times, we are introducing a Vitality status guarantee. 
If your plan renews between 6 April and 30 June 2020, we will take either your previous plan year’s Vitality status, or your current year’s Vitality status, whichever is the highest. Any Vitality Healthcheck measurement which was in a healthy range (green zone) in your previous plan year, will remain valid for your current plan year. For life insurance members, this includes Vitality Healthcheck results used for setting your Wellness Status or in calculating your cashback for the year. 

Can I get a Vitality Healthcheck at home? 
You’ll be able to access a Vitality Healthcheck at home from mid-April 2020. A Vitality Healthcheck will be carried out through a ‘virtual’ appointment with a nurse, and using a health kit sent to you when you book an appointment.

Active Reward partners

Cineworld
Cineworld cinemas are now temporarily closed. If you made a booking and used a code on a film you couldn’t see, we will contact you in due course to issue you with a new code once the cinemas are back open for business. 

Starbucks
Starbucks stores are now temporarily closed. This reward benefit was due to end for Vitality Members in April, so we are now working with Caffè Nero to review how we can deliver Active Rewards from April 2020.

Vue
Vue cinemas are now temporarily closed. If you have used an Active Reward cinema voucher to make a booking online, Vue will automatically send you a replacement with a longer expiry date. If you have made a booking direct with a Vue cinema, you should email a copy of your ticket to customerservices@vuemail.com.

Waitrose & Partners

Please note, there is increased demand for home deliveries at the moment. Please use Waitrose.com or the Waitrose & Partners app for the latest delivery information.


Other reward partners

Allen Carr
Allen Carr Stop Smoking Programme sessions have now moved online. Please contact Allen Carr for more information.

Bluecrest Health Screening
If you think you have Coronavirus, have travelled through a high risk country in the last 14 days or have been in contact with someone who thinks they might have Coronavirus, please do not attend your health screening. Please contact Bluecrest to rebook your appointment.

Champneys
Champneys have now temporarily closed. You can read their announcement here  If you would like to move your retreat booking, please contact Champneys direct.

David Lloyd Clubs
David Lloyd Clubs are now temporarily closed. You can read their update on content and membership fees here.

Disney Store (Vitality Healthy Kids)
Disney Stores on the high-street are now temporarily closed. You can read their update here. You can still use your Healthy Kids reward vouchers online at shopDisney.

Mr & Mrs Smith 
Mr & Mrs Smith have issued their own Coronavirus update. If you have any questions or concerns about an existing or potential booking, you can contact Mr & Mrs Smith 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at Smith24@smithhotels.com.

Nuffield Health Fitness & Wellbeing Clubs
Nuffield Health Fitness & Wellbeing Clubs are now temporarily closed. You can read their update on content and membership fees here.

Runners Need
Runners Need high-street stores are now temporarily closed. You can still buy discounted sports shoes from their online store

SuperCarers
SuperCarers have put together some Coronavirus FAQs if you have any questions about carers. 

parkrun
All parkrun events across the UK are currently suspended due to Coronavirus. Please check parkrun’s website for more information.

Virgin Active
Virgin Active Gyms are now temporarily closed. You can read their update on content and membership fees here.

Vitality Healthcheck
We are not currently accepting new Vitality Healthcheck bookings.

WW
WW have decided to transition their in-person Workshops to virtual Workshops until 4 April 2020. WW have issued their own Coronavirus update, so you can check their website for their latest information. 

All other partners are reporting no impacts to their service.