What exactly is Letsbuyhealthcare?

Letsbuyhealthcare is a direct on-line connection with private hospitals and other private healthcare facilities. Traditionally private health insurance and private hospitals go hand in hand. Now, for the first time, Letsbuyhealthcare provides those who cannot afford private health insurance with an on-line shop window to those same services and faster access to treatment. Private treatments and health services are now also presented by private hospitals to uninsured patients in a simple accessible way.

Whether treatment is needed for you, or someone else, we make it simple, transparent and easy for everyone to shop for private healthcare. Once you make an online booking you can sit back and relax. A representative from your chosen private hospital will follow up directly (and in confidence) with you to make all the arrangements for an appointment.

Please note that Letsbuyhealthcare is not a healthcare provider, or private health insurer, and it does not represent or promote any particular private hospital or private healthcare supplier.

Why do I need Letsbuyhealthcare? If I wanted to self-pay for my treatment, couldn’t I price my own healthcare needs with a private hospital?

Anyone is free to price a healthcare treatment. But it can be cumbersome to do so. You have to phone around. Sometimes to get separate prices for consultant fees, hospital fees and radiology fees. All just to get one total price in one hospital. If you want a comparison price for another hospital you are back on the phone again.

Letsbuyhealthcare cuts through all of that and works with hospitals to present you, in one place, with what you need on pricing and other information in order to help you make a decision on "going private". So, by booking through Letsbuyhealthcare, you can sit back - your chosen hospital will come to you

Must I have seen my General Practitioner before I pay my deposit to a hospital using Letsbuyhealthcare?

Yes. Unless specifically stated otherwise, when you book and pay a deposit to your private hospital the treatment needed must be based on the medical opinion of either a qualified medical general practitioner or specialist medical consultant recognised by the Medical Council of Ireland. In other words, you can't self-diagnose a medical treatment. However some services offered by private hospitals do not require a GP referral letter. If so, the hospital will clearly say so in the website description of the service or treatment

Can I pay on behalf of someone else?

Yes, as long as you have their permission. You may pay a deposit to your private hospital on behalf of someone in the family – a parent or grandparent, for example – and include your own contact details. You will be asked to just provide the name of the patient, if different to the person paying, so that your private hospital is aware of that when they follow up with you.

Does Letsbuyhealthcare charge a fee or commission?

Registering with Letsbuyhealthcare is completely free. When you register, you will be provided with a customer number. YOU DON'T PAY ANYTHING AT ALL TO LETSBUYHEALTHCARE. Your online booking deposit (or full payment if you opt for that) is all paid directly to your chosen hospital and our website has been connected up with private hospitals so that you can do that.

Letsbuyhealthcare is providing a service to the hospitals and we separately agree our charges with them for that.

Can I just register with Letsbuyhealthcare even if I don't need treatment right now?

Yes. We have plans for other services that we will be offering in the future to registered customers.

Is my data and healthcare information safe?

You can relax in the knowledge that once you register, Letsbuyhealthcare will have taken every conceivable measure to ensure robust, leading-edge security of all your data and information. We will only ask for essential data that we absolutely need to process what you want.

Who are the healthcare providers using the Letsbuyhealthcare website?

Letsbuyhealthcare only partners with accredited private hospitals and providers that have a recognised accreditation in the delivery of quality healthcare. Consultants must be registered on the Specialist Register of the Medical Council of Ireland.

What will be included in the price offered?

Typically, the packaged price offered will be ‘all inclusive’ – covering normal costs, consultation fees, medical consumables, hospital charges and all anticipated costs for your treatment. You will also be provided with an indicative date for treatment by your private hospital. We've also arranged with each hospital to display whether a price is fixed for the treatment selected and booked. You will see that in the Guarantee column when you search for a treatment

What if it turns out that I need more - or less - treatment than was originally anticipated?

We have arranged for hospitals to display to you a level of price guarantee for each specific treatment or service. Ideally this will be a 'Fixed' price guarantee. So that you have comfort that no further hospital costs can, or will, arise. Any treatment you select for booking should be based on the opinion of a qualified medical professional. However if, for some unforeseen reason, it turns out after booking, that you do not need the treatment you selected at all (or perhaps need a different treatment) then each private hospital has their own procedures, protocols and terms and conditions to help you in these situations.

We'd also add that Letsbuyhealthcare has no hand, act or part in the provision of healthcare. It has no responsibility or liability whatsoever for any additional cost that arises and/or the quality of the service provided by any private healthcare provider, its employees, its suppliers or its contractors.

What information do I need to supply to a private hospital? Do I need to contact my General Practitioner or my Consultant?

Your chosen private hospital will be in contact with anyone directly who makes a booking. They will personally advise you on the steps and information required to progress with an appointment for a diagnosis or treatment . Typically a referral letter from your GP will be required

Does 'going private' affect my status or entitlement to public healthcare?

No it does not. Any decision you make to ‘go private’ for a particular treatment is entirely your own and it does not affect your current, or future, entitlement to the public health services available to all Irish residents.

Are there any tax implications?

You can claim tax relief on the cost of health expenses. These can be anyone's health expenses as long as you have paid for them. For example, a 'self payer' payment of €500 to a private hospital for non-routine healthcare will mean tax relief of €100, with the actual cost to you being €400.

Please refer to the Irish Revenue website for guidance and full information on taxation relief.