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Excessive medical bills are the leading cause of bankruptcy filings in the US today, and it's not something that happens only to seniors - over 50 million Americans under the age of 65 are unable to pay their existing medical bills.
This explains why health insurance is the most sought after of all employee benefits, and yet, even with health insurance, the deductibles and copays and the loopholes for items health insurance leaves uncovered can still lead to financial ruin. One way to help protect your employees from this fate is by offering critical illness and cancer insurance.
What Exactly Is Critical Illness Insurance?
Critical illness & cancer insurance is an add-on type of health insurance that protects the policyholder against severe, life altering illnesses and conditions, including various forms of cancer.
This type of insurance differs from regular health plans in that it pays direct to the insured a lump sum of cash in the event of a qualifying illness rather than paying to the provider. It is not based based on deductibles, copayments, or coinsurance.
And the benefit can be used in almost any way the recipient chooses, such as to help pay the mortgage during a financial pinch caused by high medical expenses, to pay for experimental treatments when you have late stage cancer, or to cover the costs of traveling abroad to receive treatment.
Covered conditions vary from policy to policy, but often include things like:
Where Can Critical Illness Insurance Fit Into An Employee Benefits Program?
There are a number of classes of employee benefits to make a part of your overall benefits package for your employees. Some of them are mandated by law, others are virtually required if you want to attract and keep top labor, and others add flexibility and variety.
Critical illness insurance clearly falls into the latter category. It's not a core product, that is a basic benefit expected by your employee - but it's something many people will be interested in and that adds options to your overall program.
In that vein, consider making critical illness insurance an opt-in benefit. Use the group insurance discount to make it worthwhile to sign up for and give a range of levels, with the lowest level having a very inexpensive premium.
For those who fear their health insurance alone won't be enough in the event of a major health crisis in the family - because deductibles and copays will leave too many out of pocket expenses, critical illness coverage will be a very attractive option.
Remember that part of winning the best talent over to your team (and keeping them there) is not just offering solid core employee benefits, but also offering a wide variety of valuable benefits that at least some workers will want and value, setting your company apart from the rest.
To learn more about adding critical illness insurance, or to discuss other ways to build a superior employee benefits program, feel free to contact Summerlin Benefits Consulting today!