Cancer is one of the most dreaded diseases that can hit you. However, one cannot choose to be afraid and need to ensure that they get the condition treated. It is understandable that the cost of cancer treatment can be expensive and apart from taking a mental toll on the person, it can also be a reason for financial tensions. Purchasing a cancer insurance policy can be the way forward to tackle this dreaded condition from a monetary point of view as a cancer insurance policy will cover the cost of treatment for cancer and will not put the person or his/her family under any sort of financial burden. However, it is important to know a bit about the disease as well as its stages which can help an individual in choosing a suitable cancer insurance policy.
Different stages of cancer
There are 4 stages of cancer which are:
Carcinoma In Situ (CIS) - This is the first stage where the cancer cells are yet to penetrate the basement membrane or attack the nearby tissues.
Early stage - The second stage shows the presence of one of the malignant conditions that can attack and destroy the surrounding tissues of one’s body.
Major stage - In this stage not only are the nearby tissues attacked and destroyed due to spreading of malignant cells, but a malignant tumour is also formed which starts to grow at an uncontrollable rate.
Critical stage - In this stage the cancer has spread to other parts of the body.
Points to be considered before purchasing a cancer insurance policy
There are certain points that a person needs to keep in mind before choosing a cancer insurance policy.
Adequate cover amount - The medical expenses are expected to rise in future, the cost for the treatment of cancer is expected to surge even more. Since it takes a longer period of time to treat this type of condition, the expenses are expected to rise. Hence, a person must ensure that he/she has an adequate cover amount that can help in meeting the cost of treatment.
Longer duration - Since the treatment of cancer takes a fairly long period of time, the person must ensure that he/she has a policy with a longer tenure and if possible with no change in the premium payable. There is no age for an individual to fall ill due to cancer and hence a policy is required which covers him/her for a longer period of time.
Income benefit feature and waiver of premium - A person suffering from cancer will not be able to work which will surely affect the family financially. The person will also find it difficult to pay his/her premiums on a regular basis and thus it becomes important to select a policy where the premiums are waived off and the family does not suffer any loss of income. It is also advisable that an individual purchase a plan with the option to increase the sum assured depending upon the expenses incurred during the treatment of cancer.
The policy must cover all stages of cancer - The insured must select a plan that covers the patient regardless of which stage the cancer is in. The cost of treatment rises with each stage and hence one should purchase a policy which can take care of all medical expenses arising due to cancer treatment.
Terms related to waiting and survival period - A person before purchasing a cancer policy must read all the terms and conditions including the ones related to the waiting and the survival period. The waiting period is nothing but the duration during which the insured will have to wait before being provided coverage by the insurer. The survival period is the duration of time for which the person diagnosed will have to be alive in order to claim his/her policy benefits. In short, the insured must make sure that neither the waiting period nor the survival period is too long.
Benefits of having cancer insurance
Some of the benefits of having cancer insurance are:
- The benefits provided can be used by the insured as per his/her convenience.
- A cancer insurance policy generally covers all stages of cancer.
- Most insurers pay some percentage of the sum assured on the first diagnosis of cancer.
- Some plans provide the option to increase the sum assured. There are other plans which also waive off of the premiums payable depending on the stage of cancer the patient is suffering from.
- The insured can claim tax benefits under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act, 1961.
List of popular cancer plans
Below given are the list of some of the cancer plans a person can avail.
- SBI Life Sampoorn Cancer Suraksha
- ICICI Pru Heart/Cancer Protect
- HDFC Life Cancer Care
- Aegon Life iCancer Plan
- Max Life Cancer Insurance Plan