How dreaded is the disease Cancer
In 2015, about 90 million people had Cancer and 8.80 million deaths occurred due to this dreaded disease which is also the second leading cause of death globally. According to World Health Organization (WHO) nearly 10 Lakh new cases are reported every year in India. Unfortunately, nearly 5 Lakh people annually die in India due to cancer and this number will go up and projected to raise five folds by 2025, according to WHO.
During 2016, estimated 1.5 lakh new breast cancer cases have been registered (over 10 per cent of all cancers) in India. Breast Cancer is the number one Cancer followed by lungCancer with estimated 1.14 lakhs cases, according to a premier medical research organisation in India.Cervix is the third most common cancer in India with estimated 1 lakh new cases reported in 2016 according to The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
The alarming statistics above can make any one depressed and anxious but the fact is that Cancer is now a common disease globally and different types of cancer are being diagnosed every day.
What is the treatment cost of Cancer?
The treatment of Cancer is spiralling with discovery of new drugs and technology. As you may know, in India, the cost is so high that it may wipe out the entire savings of the family and thus ruin the financial future of the family.
However, there is a way by which you can protect this – the answer is Cancer Protection Plan offered by life insurance companies. But before we discuss that, let us see some example of the tentative costs involved (it may vary from one institute to the other) in treatment of Cancer –
- Breast cancer surgery can cost Rs 250,000 – 450,000
- Chemotherapy – The cost depends on the drug applied and the number of sessions. Approximate cost can vary between 30,000 – 100,000 for each session
- Radiation – This therapy can cost Rs 150,000 – 200,000 per cycle
- A PET-CT Scan can alone cost Rs 25,000 – 40,000
- Targeted therapies – These can cost approx. Rs 18-20 lakhs for 5-8 sessions
- Radiation – This therapy can cost Rs 125,000 – 150,000 per cycle
How to protect oneself from Cancer
If you have a regular health insurance plan or mediclaim insurance, it pays for the hospitalization cost upto the extent of the sum assured taken. Also, if you have taken a critical illness rider, the life insurance company pays the rider amount immediately on diagnosis of the disease without submission of any bill.
However, as you have seen, the cost of Cancer treatment is so high that, a regular health plan may not be enough to recover the entire treatment cost. Likewise, the coverage in a critical illness rider policy is limited and if you add that too, still it may not be sufficient to recover the entire treatment cost involved for the prolonged period.
The answer lies in taking a cover exclusive to Cancer – The Cancer Protection Plan.
How the cancer Protection Plan works
Cancer Protection Plan is normally offered between age 18 to 65 years and it can be taken for 10, 15 or 20 years or 80 year minus age at entry. Sum assured taken can be from 10 Lakhs to maximum 40 Lakhs.
Cancer Protection Plan may come in many variant. For example – Lump sum cover and Lump sum cover with income benefit. In ‘Lump Sum Cover’ the fixed payout is made on diagnosis of cancer and in ‘Lump Sum Cover with Income Benefit’, one can receive a fixed percentage of the Cancer cover amount monthly for few years,over and above getting the lump sum amount on diagnosis of Cancer.
The other benefits of Cancer Protection Plan are that premium for these plans are generally low and in most cases medical examination is not required.
Our country continues to be one of the most under-penetrated in the world, as far as taking health protection plans are concerned. Not even 1% of the total population is insured for health coverage even though there has been a growing awareness for health insurance products. Since Cancer treatment is long term in nature, it also translates into a recurring expenditure and loss of pay due to a prolong absence from work. This is the reason why one must have a Cancer Protection Plan exclusively over and above the regular health plan and the mediclaim insurance plan.
Even though Cancer is dreaded and the treatment can be prolonged, a Cancer Protection Plan can help not only fight with Cancer but also helps protecting your life’s savings.