No one wants to think about it.
No one wants to imagine hearing your medical professional say, “I’m sorry to tell you this, but you have cancer.” You don’t want to put your focus on all the details that might need to be worked out, all the medical care you would need, all the ways your life could change suddenly.
Some people are unfortunate enough to have experienced how cancer impacts you as a family member or friend of a patient who is going through treatment. If you’ve been close to a cancer patient, you may be able to understand all the work that goes into managing yourself, your family, your home and your job while you’re battling such a terrible disease. But you don’t want to think about it happening to you.
What Are Your Odds of Being Diagnosed With Cancer?
Even if you live a healthy lifestyle and don’t have a history of cancer in your family, the dreaded disease can still hit you.
According to the American Cancer Society, this year there will be 1,688,780 new cases of cancer diagnosed. Just over 600,000 people will die.
More research from the American Cancer Society shows that of the most common types of cancer, 12.9 percent of men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer and 12.4 percent of women will develop breast cancer — that’s roughly 1 in 8 people. It’s no wonder cancer impacts so many of us — we’ve likely had someone in our families or amongst our friend groups who have suffered.
The good news is that with current treatment methods, your odds of surviving your cancer is better than ever. But it will take a tremendous toll on your family, your finances and your career.
What Can You Do to Lessen the Impact of a Cancer Diagnosis?
Let’s be honest. A cancer diagnosis is going to be devastating, no matter how you look at it. But if you were forward thinking enough to have critical illness insurance before you were diagnosed, you’d have a whole lot less to worry about in the months to come.
That’s because critical illness insurance that covers cancer can pay for many bills and expenses you never even thought you’d have. Unlike health insurance, which pays your medical expenses, critical illness coverage pays for all the other costs that rack up while you’re working hard to get better. Things like your mortgage, your utility bills, your child’s daycare or tuition, your pet’s boarding expenses while you’re away, your transportation costs for getting to treatment — all can be covered by a critical illness insurance policy.
Another thing that you won’t have to worry about is the type of care you’ll receive. You might find out about an experimental treatment that your health insurance won’t cover. In that case, you can use funds from your critical illness policy to pay for the out-of-network treatment costs. Critical illness insurance can also go towards the cost of deductibles and co-pays that your medical insurance doesn’t pay for.
What If a Family Member Is Diagnosed With Cancer?
It might not be you who gets the initial bad news of cancer. It might be your spouse who makes the majority of your household income, or your child. If a family member becomes ill, you’ll need to focus on providing care as well as transporting to medical appointments. That means it will be hard for anyone in the household to work.
Critical illness insurance can help with the household expenses in this case, as well. If your child becomes ill, your policy can pay for your expenses so you don’t have to work full-time and can devote your energy to care. It’s not unusual for a family who plans ahead to get this kind of coverage for every member, just in case.
What Else Do You Need to Know About Critical Illness Insurance?
There are several types of policies available to fit just about any need, and the coverage isn’t super expensive. In fact, plans start at $16 per month and you don’t need a medical exam to qualify. If you don’t have a lot of savings, it can be a small price to pay to ensure you’ll be taken care of if you or someone in your household is diagnosed with cancer or another disease like stroke.
If you do receive a diagnosis, you simply submit it to your critical illness policy provider. You will have a waiting period — usually 30 days, depending on your policy — and then you’re given a lump sum of money to help you make ends meet while you are fighting to get better. You don’t have to justify how you spend the money or submit receipts to your provider; it can be used for nearly any type of household expense you would normally incur.
Note that most policies don’t take effect right away. That means you can’t go out and buy a critical illness insurance policy if you don’t feel well, get your diagnosis and collect. Most policies have a 90-day waiting period between when you first purchase insurance and when you’re eligible to draw funds, so it’s crucial to plan for and buy the insurance well before will need it.
How Can You Help Others You Care About Who May Be at Risk?
If you have loved ones who you want to protect from the financial burdens that accompany a disease like cancer, be sure to let them know about critical illness insurance. Many people simply aren’t aware that critical illness insurance exists as an inexpensive option for themselves or their family members. You can share this article individually with those you care about or on your social media account to help spread the word about this important type of insurance policy.
If you have questions about how critical illness insurance works, what it covers or how it can benefit you and your family, please contact us to learn more. We’d love to help you understand how a typical policy works and whether you are a good candidate.