Category: Financial Planning

Impact of long-term diseases and treatment on your goals-How to prepare for it?

In recent years, life-threatening diseases such as cancer, AIDS, and cardiovascular ailments have shown a concerning increase. According to reports from Times of India, cancer claims the lives of nearly 500,000 people annually in India, and the World Health Organization predicts that this number may rise to 700,000 by 2015. In addition, Indian Express reported approximately 1.96 lakh new HIV infections in the previous year.

Given these alarming statistics, the question arises: Do you need additional financial protection if you or a family member is diagnosed with such a condition, or is the group insurance provided by your employer sufficient? Let's explore the impact of chronic diseases on healthcare costs and find out if additional measures are necessary.

The Impact of Chronic Diseases on Healthcare Costs

To understand the financial burden of chronic diseases, let's consider two case studies:

Case 1: Lung Cancer Imagine a 65-year-old male patient diagnosed with lung cancer. The cost breakdown would typically include an initial diagnosis expense of 6,500 INR, monthly medication costs of 5,000 INR, and a comprehensive treatment plan involving four chemotherapy sessions, supportive medications, and 20 days of radiation, totaling approximately 5,10,200 INR.

Case 2: AIDS In the case of an AIDS diagnosis, an initial diagnosis that includes CT scans, PET scans, and MRIs can cost around 1,00,000 INR. Chemotherapy sessions cost approximately 57,000 INR each, supportive medications come to around 8,800 INR each, and two cycles of radiation may amount to 2,47,000 INR. Contrary to a common misconception, individuals with proper medical care can live up to 20-25 years with AIDS. For a 35-year-old requiring 25 years of treatment, the total cost would be 15,00,000 INR.

As demonstrated, the expenses associated with chronic diseases can be substantial.

How to Prepare: Critical Illness Cover

While it's impossible to guarantee protection against these diseases, it's wise to prepare for them, particularly if your family has a history of such ailments. The most effective way to safeguard yourself from long-term illnesses is by obtaining a critical illness cover.

What is a Critical Illness Cover? This cover provides a lump-sum amount if you are diagnosed with a critical illness listed in the policy during the coverage period. The payout can be equal to or less than the sum assured under the policy. This financial support not only provides security during temporary job loss but also aids in covering the expenses associated with the diagnosis and treatment of critical illnesses.

Features of Critical Illness Cover

  • Covers specific critical illnesses listed in the policy.
  • Excludes pre-existing conditions and congenital illnesses.
  • Has a waiting period before a claim can be made.
  • Includes a survival clause, requiring the policyholder to survive a defined period after diagnosis for the benefit to be payable.

It's advisable to opt for a stand-alone critical illness cover that doesn't depend on other events for benefit utilization.

Is a Critical Illness Cover Necessary Without a Family History of Illness?

Considering the significant increase in these diseases and rising medical costs, experts recommend obtaining a critical illness cover for yourself and your family, even if there's no history of such illnesses. The funds can be used to clear debts, cover medical bills, or adapt your home to your specific needs.

In conclusion, a critical illness cover serves as a financial lifeline, and it's a wise choice to protect yourself and your loved ones from the financial impact of long-term diseases.

If you have any unanswered questions or require assistance, please feel free to contact us. We're here to help with your financial planning and investment decisions.

Samiksha Seth
Content Strategist – Dilzer Consultants Pvt Ltd.