Critical Illness Cover
WHAT IS CRITICAL ILLNESS COVER?
Many people insure themselves in case they die, but what about if you survive after being diagnosed with a critical illness or undergo a serious medical procedure?
The financial consequences of suffering a critical illness can be far greater than dying. You may lose one or both your incomes if either of you have to give up work to care for the other, however you will still have all the normal costs of living, even the possibility of additional costs for medical treatment or carers.
Critical Illness Cover is designed to help protect you and your family and dependants from the financial hardship that a serious illness can cause.
By paying a tax-free lump sum if you are diagnosed with or undergo a medical procedure for one of the specified critical illnesses covered by the policy, it can help relieve the financial worry, allowing you to focus on your recovery. It can be used to repay debts such as a mortgage, for home alterations or specialist equipment, pay for private treatment, or simply provide an income whilst convalescing.
The most common claims on critical illness polices are for cancer, heart attack and stroke.
- There are around 367,000 new cancer cases in the UK every year, that’s around 1,000 every day (2015-2017).
- In females in the UK, there were more than 179,000 new cancer cases in 2017.
- In males in the UK, there were around 187,000 new cancer cases in 2017.
- Every two minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with cancer.
- Breast, prostate, lung and bowel cancers together accounted for more than half (53%) of all new cancer cases in the UK in 2017.
Statistics from Cancer Research UK www.cancerresearchuk.org/health-professional/cancer-statistics
- There are over 1.2 million stroke survivors in the UK.
- Stroke is the leading cause of adult disability. More than a third of all stroke survivors are left dependent on others for everyday activities.
- There are over 100,000 strokes in the UK every Year. That’s more than one every five minutes
- People of working age who have had a stroke are two to three time more likely to be unemployed 8 years after their stroke.
- Stroke is the fourth biggest killer in the in the UK. Fourth in England and Wales, and the third biggest killer in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Statistics from Stroke Association www.stroke.org.uk/resource-sheet/stroke-statistics
- Cardiovascular (heart and circulatory) disease causes more than a quarter (26 per cent) of all deaths in the UK; that’s nearly 160,000 deaths each year – an average of 435 people each day or one death every three minutes.
- Around 42,000 people under the age of 75 in the UK die from CVD each year.
- Since the BHF was established the annual number of deaths from CVD in the UK has fallen by half.
- In 1961, more than half of all deaths in the UK were attributed to CVD (320,000 CVD deaths).
- Since 1961 the UK death rate from CVD has declined by more than three quarters. Death rates have fallen more quickly than the actual number of deaths because people in this country are now living longer lives.
- There are around 7 million people living with cardiovascular disease in the UK: 3.5 million men and 3.5 million women.
Statistics from the British Heart Foundation www.bhf.org.uk/research/heart-statistics
Below are some examples of the types of Critical Illnesses that insurance companies include in their policies. However, some companies cover many more conditions and have additional features such as “Children’s Critical Illness Cover”. These would be discussed with you and detailed in the providers Key Facts Documents.
Alzheimer’s disease – resulting in permanent symptoms
Aorta graft surgery – requiring surgical replacement
Aplastic anaemia – with permanent bone marrow failure
Bacterial meningitis – resulting in permanent symptoms
Benign brain tumour – resulting in either surgical removal or permanent symptoms
Blindness – permanent and irreversible
Cardiac arrest – with insertion of a defibrillator
Cancer – excluding less advanced cases
Cardiomyopathy – of specified severity
Coma – with associated permanent symptoms
Coronary artery by-pass grafts – with surgery to divide the breastbone or anterolateral thoracotomy
Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD) – resulting in permanent symptoms
Deafness – permanent and irreversible
Dementia – resulting in permanent symptoms
Encephalitis – resulting in permanent symptoms
Heart attack – of specified severity
Heart valve replacement or repair – with surgery
HIV infection – caught from a blood transfusion, physical assault or accident at work
Kidney failure – requiring permanent dialysis
Liver failure – of advance stage
Loss of hand or foot – permanent physical severance
Loss of speech – total permanent and irreversible
Major organ transplant – from another donor
Motor neurone disease – resulting in permanent symptoms
Multiple sclerosis – where there have been symptoms
Multiple system atrophy – resulting in permanent symptoms
Open heart surgery – with median sternotomy
Paralysis of a limb – total and irreversible
Parkinson’s disease – resulting in permanent symptoms
Primary pulmonary hypertension – of specified severity
Progressive supranuclear palsy – resulting in permanent symptoms
Removal of an eyeball – due to injury or disease
Respiratory failure – of advance stage
Spinal Stroke – resulting in symptoms lasting at least 24 hours
Stroke – resulting in symptoms lasting at least 24 hours
Systemic lupus erythematosus – with severe complications
Third degree burns – covering 20% of the surface area of the body or 20% of the face or head
Traumatic brain injury – resulting in permanent symptoms
Please note that not all forms of cancer, heart attack and stroke are covered by a critical illness policy.
As with all insurance policies, conditions and exclusions will apply.
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