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Critical Illness

Critical Illness Insurance

Do you know anyone who has suffered from cancer, a heart attack or a stroke? The answer is almost certainly “yes.” Consider these statistics:

  • Every 34 seconds, someone in the U.S. will suffer from a coronary event 1
  • Every 24 seconds, someone in the U.S. is diagnosed with cancer 2
  • Every 40 seconds, someone in the U.S. has a stroke Heart Attack 3

It could happen to you.

If a serious illness DOES strike, there’s a good chance you’ll live through it. Now, check out the survival rates for some of the biggest critical illnesses:

  • Stroke – 75% 3
  • Breast Cancer – 89% 4
  • Prostate Cancer – 98% 4
  • Skin Cancer (Melanoma) – 91% 4

There’s more reason than ever before to think about what happens after your illness.

Are you financially prepared? Hint: Health insurance isn’t enough.

You may be thinking, “I have health insurance. I’ll be covered if anything happens.” Once again, let’s look at the numbers. The average out-of-pocket medical expense associated with suffering from a critical illness is $7,575, a recent report from Sun Life Financial5 reveals. If you have a heart attack, it’ll cost you around $14,000. A stroke costs about $17,000.

Plus, medical insurance doesn’t replace the income you lose while you’re unable to work because of your illness. It won’t pay the mortgage or buy food for your family.

In fact, nearly two-thirds of bankruptcies are the result of medical expenses, even though 78% of those filing for bankruptcy had health insurance 6 according to a study by the National Critical Illness Risk Assessment Study, published by the American Association for Critical Illness Insurance.

What is Critical Illness Insurance?

Critical illness insurance (also referred to as catastrophic illness insurance) pays a lump sum cash benefit upon the first confirmed diagnosis of a covered illness, such as heart attack, stroke, cancer or HIV/AIDS.  The specific details about coverage may vary, depending on the plan you choose.

You may be eligible to collect the benefit more than once, if you are diagnosed with multiple conditions. The benefit dollars can be used for things like:

  • Your mortgage, auto loan or credit card payments
  • Your income and your spouse’s lost wages, if one or both of you has to stop working
  • Your extra medical costs – deductibles, prescriptions, out-of-network expenses, etc.
  • Your rehabilitation, training or education
  • Lodging expenses if you’re seeking medical attention outside of your area
  • Child care and nursing care
  • A relaxing vacation while you recover

A critical illness insurance policy can be purchased to complement your existing health or disability insurance plan. Sometimes it is offered as a rider on a traditional life insurance policy.

What does critical illness insurance cover?

Most plans pay the benefit in the event of the following:

  • Heart attack
  • Cancer
  • Coma
  • Stroke
  • Permanent paralysis due to a covered accident
  • Any major organ transplant
  • Coronary artery bypass surgery
  • Angioplasty
  • Eyesight, speech, or hearing impairment
  • End-stage kidney (renal) failure

What if you’re healthy and plan on staying that way?

How many people plan on getting cancer or having a heart attack? No one does. And while none of us want to think about any of this, the reality is startling when you look at the numbers above.

Call us at 800-442-9899 to learn more about protecting yourself, your assets and your family with critical illness insurance coverage, or just click the Get Started button.

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1. American Heart Association,”Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics – 2013 Update: A Report from the American Heart Association,” Circulation (December 12, 2013)
2. American Cancer Society
3.University of Maryland Medical Center, http://umm.edu/health/medical/reports/articles/stroke
4. www.cancer.gov/statistics/find
5. Sun Life Financial Critical Illness report, 2013
6. National Critical Illness Risk Assessment Study, American Association for Critical Illness Insurance

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