Anna's story

“Bupa fast tracked me to a specialist”

Anna, 62, breast cancer survivor.

Search Google: nipple discharge. The first time Anna investigated her symptoms she looked online and the results suggested breast cancer. Panic. Anna knew she needed to talk to a health professional fast, but struggled to book a GP appointment at her local practice. Rather than wait to see a GP, she used her Bupa health insurance to call our Direct Access team straight away.

That all important first call.

Diagnosing cancer early can save lives. In the case of breast cancer, more than 90% of women who are diagnosed at the earliest stage survive the disease for at least five years1. This is compared to around 15% of women who survive when diagnosed at the most advanced stage1. That’s why we act quickly. Anna was able to call us first, have her symptoms assessed over the phone using national clinical guidance and, due to the nature of her symptoms, get a referral to a consultant there and then. With clear advice and an appointment scheduled in the next five days, we helped to ease the worrying wait.

Fast diagnosis and treatment within weeks.

Following an examination by the consultant, a mammogram, ultrasound and a biopsy all in one day under the same roof – Anna was diagnosed with stage 1 breast cancer. Getting answers sooner rather than later meant that she could move forward and focus on dealing with her diagnosis. Four weeks later, Anna was recovering from her surgery at home with her husband and whippet.

Helping Anna get back to feeling like herself.

Everyone’s experience of cancer is different. Anna admits, “you just don’t know how you’ll cope when it happens to you. Sometimes I didn’t want to talk, but I knew the Bupa oncology nurses were there if I needed them.” Knowing that we were there with expert advice, understanding and vital support was a reassurance for her. “Speaking to them actually cheered me up and we often had a giggle.”

Find out more about direct access for cancer

This quote reflects the specific experience of one customer (as told to us in November 2018). The cover you choose will be subject to specific terms and conditions that may apply to your policy. Pre-existing conditions are normally excluded.

Hear from some of our members

Our members are at the centre of our purpose and drive what we do. Below some stories that highlight how we have helped members get back to being themselves, giving them access to support and medical expertise as soon as they need it.

If you'd like to share your Bupa story, please get in touch. Please email your details to and we'll get back in contact with you.


Direct Access telephone services are available as long as the symptoms are covered under the policy. If your cover excludes conditions you had before your policy started, we’ll ask you to provide evidence from your GP that your symptoms are not pre-existing for a period of up to two years from policy start date before we can refer you to a consultant through the Direct Access service. Always call us first to check that you’re covered.

Bupa health insurance is provided by Bupa Insurance Limited. Registered in England and Wales No. 3956433. Bupa Insurance Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Arranged and administered by Bupa Insurance Services Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England and Wales No. 3829851. Registered office: 1 Angel Court, London EC2R 7HJ

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