By Finbar Garcia, LUTCF, FSS, MFA
Seasons Greetings to you and your family. It’s that time of the year again, where many of us love to eat, drink and be merry, spending on unnecessary things, knowing fully well that we are wasting our money.
So why not spend on what you know will not create wastage and will leave you in a better position financially.
Having recently participated in Cancer Awareness Month in October, some of the facts that were revealed are frightening. It was said that one in every eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. For a small nation, this is considered high.
Cancer awareness is geared towards all men, women, and children. It’s not only breast cancer that is common among our population, but there are also many types of cancers, and some uncommon ones are now showing up.
For men, prostate cancer is the number one killer. While cancer treatment is free at designated public hospitals, the waiting period may be long and based on the stage of the cancer at diagnosis, immediate medical attention may be needed. This will mean that you may have to face private medical institutions. It is a fact that most persons will want to be treated at the private hospitals once they can afford it. So, let’s look at two possible options of taking care of cancer or any critical illness and how best to fund it.
Financing health care through an insurance policy cannot be done when you are already diagnosed, it must be in place before. Some people may have an individual health plan or are currently enrolled with their company’s group health plan or even have both.
These health plans are designed to ensure that the doctors, medical institutions, and pharmacies are paid. They don’t give you that flexibility to continue living comfortably enough knowing that your monthly bills are also taken care of. Remember, when someone is diagnosed with cancer or any critical illness, their first thought is “I want to live” and of course their spouse, children, and others will be on their mind.
Being diagnosed with a critical illness creates two burdens, Medical Treatment/Care Burden, and Financial Support/Income Burden.
Why place additional burden and worries on yourself and family when you can supersize the known, your Critical Illness Plan, to take care of the unknown. Let’s look at the benefits of both the Health Plan and the Critical Illness Plan.
Individual or Group Health Plan: These plans are considered reimbursement plans, and, in most cases, you are covered up to prescribed limits and benefits. While you can assign the payments directly to the doctor or hospital, with approval from the plan provider, you will be out of pocket for some part of the cost or may have to fund it upfront and wait to be reimbursed a percentage. These plans are ideal to cover early detection of any medical condition or even some after care follow-ups.
There are other benefits that these plans offer to you and your family, some of these are Major Medical, Dental, Vision, Preventative Care and Maternity, the list goes on.
The cost of these plans tends to increase based on certain loss-ratio factors the insurer will use to calculate premiums every policy year. This may cause the cost of the plan to be higher than what you budgeted for, thereby putting a stretch on your income.
If you never used the plan, which is a sign that you are probably in good health, there is no refund of premiums or cash-back, if or when you decide to cancel. These health plans carry exclusions for any pre-existing conditions or relations to any illness or medical issue that you may have had prior to joining the plan. This can cause an issue in the future if you are diagnosed with an illness that is related to the exclusion, whereby, no benefit will be paid.
Critical Illness Policy: This type of policy carries a list of at least 22 critical illnesses, cancer included, that pays you upon diagnosis, where the coverage can be as much as ten million dollars in some cases.
Based on the type of policy that is available, your coverage can be carried to the maximum age of 100 or any age you so desire and your premiums are fixed. There may also be a Cash Saving that is payable if you decide to stop the policy or whenever it matures at the prescribed age.
These policies are designed to take care of all your medical care, ‘Before, During and After’ and can even include all your monthly financial commitments during the recuperation/recovery period.
This is where you remove the financial burden that the illness may have caused, and you’re better prepared to take on all medical treatment needed. This plan pays you when it’s most needed.
Many people assume they are fully protected with a standard health plan, but the exorbitant cost of treating life-threatening illnesses is usually more than any health plan will cover. Critical illness insurance could be the only thing standing between you and financial ruin.
Having both plans is like carrying two parachutes. First, you will use the health plan, and if any major issues, you have the critical illness plan that can save your life.
Investing in a critical illness policy is one of the best insurance policies you can have to fund your medical, less than $20 a day based on the amount of coverage you want.
“It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare, its because we do not dare that things are difficult”… Roman Philosopher Seneca
Call me for more information on planning your financial future. Send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 620-1185.