About 25% of Canadians die of cancer, the leading cause of death in Canada. Approximately 2 in 5 Canadians will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime. While the illness and its trajectory differ somewhat for males and females, the probability of developing cancer varies slightly by sex, at 44% for males and 43% for females.
The good news is that medical advances have raised Canada’s 5-year cancer survival rate to around 64%, up from 25% in the 1940s. This also means that more people are dealing with the challenges of being seriously ill, sometimes for an extended period. They will need to make up for lost income, maintain a home, and cover unexpected expenses such as medication and home nursing care. Critical illness insurance is one way to mitigate the stress of being seriously ill.
What is Critical Illness Insurance?
Critical illness insurance is designed to provide a tax-free lump-sum benefit if you’re diagnosed with an illness covered by your policy. It can give you a financial safety net that can help cover your regular expenses and extras that may arise. The benefit generally can be used for anything you need or want without restrictions.
Cancer can be unpredictable, making it difficult for patients and their families to anticipate the future. Critical illness insurance aims to give you peace of mind during uncertainty so you can focus more fully on your treatment and recovery.
What Are the Benefits of Critical Illness Insurance for Cancer Patients?
Critical illness insurance benefits help give you the financial breathing room to complete your treatment and recover from your illness. Cancer treatment can be very long and stressful; worrying about your family’s financial survival adds to the strain. If you have critical illness insurance, you may be able to take time off work to go to appointments, consult with your doctors, spend time with your family, and rest.
You can also use the benefit to cover extra expenses you might have and anything that makes your treatment and recovery easier. For example, you can use it for:
- Replacing a loved one’s income if they leave work to look after you.
- Transportation to and from doctor’s appointments and treatment sessions
- Lodging for you and your family if you have to travel for treatment
- Prescription drugs and over-the-counter remedies
- Assistive devices such as walkers, wheelchairs, grab bars, reachers, and stair lifts
- Adaptive technology such as screen magnifiers or voice recognition software
- Prosthetic devices
- Physical therapy and exercise devices you might need at home to complete your therapy
- Mental health care for you or your family members
- In-home nursing care
- Alternative treatments such as massage or acupuncture
- Mortgage and loan payments
- Utility bills and other household expenses such as maintenance and repairs
- Childcare expenses
- Bridging the gap between your employer’s health insurance benefits and benefits provided by your provincial government
- Lawyer’s fees for preparation of a will or power-of-attorney documents
The main advantage of critical illness insurance is that it gives you the flexibility to decide how you want to use the funds. Some patients might find that it helps their recovery to take a vacation with their family or fly in some old friends from out of town. Since the benefit is usually paid out as a lump sum after you are first diagnosed, you can also invest the funds until you need them.
Should I Consider Life Insurance or Disability Insurance Instead of Critical Illness Insurance?
- Life insurance can play an important role in your overall financial planning, but typically the beneficiaries only receive the benefit when you pass away. Since cancer survival rates are continuously increasing, there’s a better chance that you’ll live longer. However, treatment and recovery will still be part of your journey, and you may have expenses to cover. Critical illness insurance can help give you a financial buffer to manage your illness and protect your family.
- Disability insurance can also help with your living expenses while you’re ill, but your benefits will end if you’re deemed well enough to work. With critical illness insurance, you can stay on leave, focus on your treatment, or remain at work and use the benefit for other purposes.
No one expects to become seriously ill, but it’s wise to have a plan in place in case you do. Take advantage of the flexibility and peace of mind that critical illness insurance gives you with a Canada Protection Plan policy.
Canada Protection Plan is a leading provider of No Medical and Simplified Insurance. We offer a range of policies to cover you if you get a cancer diagnosis. Our offerings include:
- Tax-free benefit of up to $100,000
- No medical tests or exams
- Personalized no-obligation quote
- Easy application process with quick approval—often in just days
- Eligibility to apply even with pre-existing conditions
Not sure which plan is right for you? Contact an advisor by phone or email to talk through your family’s needs and how we can help you ensure they are protected.
421192 CAN (10/22)