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Each year, thousands are diagnosed with cancer. The first thought that rushes into the mind when you think of cancer is – pain, stress, and financial exhaustion. And, if the patient is the sole bread-earner in the family, it is all together with a chaotic circumstance as it puts up a financial obligation in terms of the physical and psychological burden.
It is where one needs to own a cancer insurance plan.
This blog will guide you in understanding,
- Why should one own a cancer insurance policy?
- What are the benefits attached to cancer insurance?
- What is the best cancer insurance policy in India?
Why is it Important to have Cancer Insurance?
Due to lifestyle disorders and hereditary issues in the coming future, the expense of cancer treatment is significant and shall continue to go high (if you need the best treatment). The expenses can range between Rs 3–4 lakhs (if it is diagnosed at an early stage) if we observe the Indian trend for cancer treatment.
However, life isn’t the same for all cancer patients if they suffer from different stages. The hospital expenditure increases depending on various conditions, and the cost can touch up to a whopping Rs.20–50 lakhs. If you have a cancer cover, it can lighten some economic distress, but it could lead to bankruptcy if you are deprived.
Note: According to an article published in The Economic Times, between 2000 and 2015, the medical expense of various cancer treatments grew by more than 300%.
Therefore, having cancer insurance can specifically guard your financial expenses irrespective of your cancer stage and the expenses related to the hospital cost.
What is the Cancer Insurance Benefits?
Suppose you consider a cancer insurance policy, unlike a complete health insurance plan or critical illness plan. In that case, the cancer insurance plan assists the policyholder with lump-sum payments that the family may utilize to meet cancer-related expenditures.
As discussed above, the components of cancer coverage vary depending on the insurer’s leverages.
As the name suggests, a cancer insurance plan is solely dedicated to covering expenditures associated with a cancer diagnosis, medication, hospitalization, chemotherapy, surgery, and other related things that can be a pricey deal for the pocket.
Some of the common types of cancer included in the cancer insurance plans are as follows:
- Ovarian cancer
- Breast cancer
- Lung cancer
- Stomach cancer
- Prostate cancer
And many more.
It also helps in saving taxes: With the help of Section 80D of the Income Tax Act (1961), you can claim a tax deduction for the respective premiums paid for the plan.
Some believe that critical illness plans can be a beneficial, comprehensive, and premium load. However, when evaluating the use of critical insurance to pay cancer therapy and hospital charges, critical illness can pose a liability because such policies only cover cancer at an advanced stage and come within three months of the waiting period.
- If you have an insufficient economic backup for cancer treatment
- Have a medical history of cancer in the family
- And suspect cancer listed under the policy
Then, investing in a cancer insurance cover can be a wise idea rather than weeping at the end seeing your bank balance go nil.
Whereas there are also a specific set of cancers that are excluded from the plan during their early stage, and they are as follows:
- All cancers are classified as benign, borderline malignant, or low malignant potential.
- Dysplasia, Squamous intraepithelial lesions or intraepithelial neoplasia Melanoma in situ and Carcinoma in situ of the skin.
- If it is an STD (sexually transmitted disease), the insurance claim is not payable.
What are the Pros & Cons of Cancer Insurance?
After going through the nitty-gritty of a cancer insurance plan, let us go through the boon and bane of having a cancer insurance plan are as follows:
Managing Hospital Expenses: It is a proven fact that the number of cancer cases will increase, and the cost of medical expenditures. If we frame this statement into numbers, medical spending accounts for almost 33% of cancer treatment costs. Moreover, cancer patients are 2.5 times more likely than non-cancer patients to become bankrupt. Cancer insurance acts as a messiah in disguise handling all the medical costs.
A monetary cushion for sole bread-winner: If you believe that due to family medical history or suspect that there are possibilities that you might be infected with the deadly disease, you must consider investing in it, especially if you are the sole bread-winner in the family. Prevention is always better than cure.
Financial Base: Who would not like to have some financial respite for their family members and hospital payments, especially when meddling with a deadly disease that can create a hole in your pocket to provide you and your family. As this process can be emotional and financially exhausting, one should consider getting a cancer insurance plan to cover most of your financial demands and reduce some financial burdens.
Exceptions: It is one of the worst parts of cancer insurance where not every type of cancer is covered. For instance, skin cancer falls under this exception (not every insurance company offers a claim for this type). Also, claims are not receivable if STDs, HIV, or AIDS cause cancer, either directly or indirectly.
Moreover, claims for cancer caused by pre-existing medical illnesses, congenital conditions, or biological and chemical exposure are also not covered.
Best Cancer Insurance Plan in India
When selecting a cancer insurance plan, one must be vigilant to every possible factor because a wrong plan can cost you a pricey deal for both treatment and the family’s financial sail. Therefore, one must always be sure and aware of the cancer insurance plan and the associated benefits.
In this blog section, we have brought you the best cancer insurance plan in India, and it is –
Aditya Birla Sun Life Insurance Cancer Shield Plan
The specially curated ABSLI cancer shield plan ensures that the policyholder is financially guaranteed at every cancer stage. Some of the features of this comprehensive cancer insurance plan are as follows:
Premium Waiver Benefit: The policyholders approve a claim under this feature under the Early Stage of Cancer Benefit. It means that all prospective premium payments for the cancer policy will be waived for the following 5 years or the period left for the policy to end (whatever is shorter beginning with the next premium due date followed by the date of diagnosis.
Policy Benefits: Under this benefit branch, the policyholder can claim 30% of the Sum Assured if diagnosed with cancer (early stage). The other 70% will be paid if the insured is diagnosed with advanced stages of listed cancer types. Moreover, if a critical stage is discovered during the first diagnosis, the policyholder can claim 100% of the Sum Assured.
Income Benefit: When you claim for this benefit during Major Stage Cancer, under the Income Benefit Option, a monthly income equal to 1% of the Sum Assured will be paid out to the policyholder for the following 5 years. However, if the policyholder meets with death, the nominee shall continue to receive the income benefit.
Grace Period & Reinstatement: As per this feature, if you cannot pay your premium by the given due date, the ABSLI cancer shield plan will offer a 30-day grace period (under this one-month phase, you will continue to receive all benefits). However, the cancer plan will be terminated if you do not pay the whole premium, including the amended premium.
Also, within five years after the initial missed payment due date, the lapsed insurance can be reactivated for full coverage.
Click here to know more about ABSLI Cancer Shield Plan.
It is always a better late than sorry situation. Having a backup is always good. It will keep your bank balance and family sane without worrying about the treatment expenses (irrespective of the cancer stage).
Don’t forget to consider the factors that might persuade you to purchase a plan.