I’m under 45…. Do I really need to mention the “C” word?

I’m under 45…. Do I really need to mention the “C” word?

The four most common Cancers … there we go, 5 words in and we’ve mentioned it! (breast, prostate, colorectal and lung) affect 80,000 people diagnosed before they turn 45.* That’s 10% of new cancer cases annually!

That’s the bad news out of the way… The good news is that many of those diagnosed will live more than ten years after their diagnosis. So we really need to think about that “what if…” scenario.

“There is without doubt cause to celebrate that a cancer diagnosis does not necessarily mean the death sentence it used to. But the sad reality is that many of people of this age may be struggling to hold down a job, support a family, and deal with the emotional impact of cancer whilst also going through treatment.’ – Juliet Bouverie, director of services and influencing at Macmillan Cancer Support

What can I do to protect myself and my family?

Consider taking out a Critical illness policy. This long-term insurance policy specifically covers some forms of serious illness such as –

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Certain types and stages of cancer
  • Conditions such as multiple sclerosis

Should the worst happen, on diagnosis of a specified illness you will receive a tax-free lump sum – a one-off payment to help pay for your mortgage or rent, debts, or pay for alterations to your home such as wheelchair access should you need it, but it’s your choice how you spend it.

Most policies will also consider permanent disabilities as a result of injury or illness. Some policies will make a smaller payment for less severe conditions, or if one of your children has one of the specified conditions.

Some things to bear in mind –

  1. Not all policies are the same
  2. There are lots of different ways to put cover in place, depending on your individual circumstances
  3. Critical Illness Cover may not be right for you!
  4. Not all policies cover children.

So the take-away here is to get some professional advice – it costs nothing to have a conversation and may well change your life (or the lives of those you love!).

* research from Macmillan Cancer Support and Public Health England’s National Cancer Intelligence Network (NCIN)

Written by John Thompson

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