was based in germany and with german HUK COBURG private health care since 2004. Just back to the UK (april 2016) - having NEVER had cause to use it (lucky) BUT what are my options? I will have the benefit of Private Health with my new company in the UK. Is there any way to get anything from them after all the years of paying in?
From my experience in the UK and US, private healthcare never really works this way regardless. Private healthcare is how it sounds, your money goes to a company that acts as a middleman between private hospitals/doctors and yourself, the idea is the more people who use that private healthcare provider without needing to use the services, the cheaper that healthcare copays or deductibles will be for you as someone who pays into the pool and needs the service. So the amounts you paid into German private healthcare will have given benefit to other people signed up to that company's health scheme, but will only be relevant within the contexts of that service.
You are in the UK now anyway, private healthcare is a luxury rather than necessity - I have had it one year of the five I have lived here and cancelled it for it never having relevance, but if you have a chronic health condition like my partner that requires frequent consultations and surgeries, you would certainly do well to have it just to speed things up. Otherwise 99% of your needs are covered fully by NHS anyway.