5 years ago today I almost died

It was Saturday 24th May 2014, I was at college at the time but I had a part-time weekend job so I was up early to get ready for work. At around 7am I left my house and got a lift to work just like any other Saturday, except this time I never made it to work. Just a couple of miles from work the car I was in aquaplaned resulting in a head on collision.

The reason I am telling you this story is because I am lucky enough to live in a part of the world where I have access to the NHS; from the incredible paramedics and firefighters who safely cut me out of the vehicle and quickly transported me to hospital, to the neurosurgeons who carried out my 6 hour surgery, I am certain that I would not be here today without them.

This is where the NHS really shows their strength, and I cannot fault a single part of my experience. However, whilst I am forever grateful to the NHS for their emergency care, I am all too aware that there are areas of the service which struggle due to lack of resources.

As someone who has been fortunate enough to have access to Private Medical Insurance, I am able to give insight into both NHS and private healthcare, and I believe both play a vital role in today’s society. Where the NHS lead with A&E, they lack in patient aftercare.

To give you an example of this, I had already finished 8 sessions of physiotherapy provided by my Private Medical Insurance, before I was even offered my first NHS appointment.

I truly believe that having access to this treatment when I needed it, rather than having to wait on the NHS waiting list was integral to my recovery.

I now work for a company who provide me with Private Medical Insurance (in addition to a whole host of other employee benefits) and I work alongside SMEs to help them look after their staff. I am passionate about my job because I understand the value of Private Medical Insurance, and want to help others to see the benefit rather than just the premium.

So next time you think about rewarding your staff, think about investing in their health. It might not be as Instagram-worthy as a new company car, but it’s the most valuable benefit you can provide (in my personal opinion).

Chesca Swinglehurst, Corporate Sales Executive for Berwick Devoil Healthcare Ltd.