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Cancer Insurance – Understanding Your Cancer Insurance Needs

 

Are you considering purchasing cancer insurance for yourself or a loved one? If so, you need to know the various factors to consider when shopping for an insurance plan. This article will address Pre-existing condition limitations, cancer insurance costs, and out-of-pocket expenses. By the time you’re finished reading, you should have a good understanding of what to expect from your new plan. After all, no one wants to pay for cancer treatments out of their own pocket.

Pre-existing condition limitations

Unless you are a very small employer, you’ll have to contend with pre-existing condition limitations when buying cancer insurance. These clauses are generally vague and apply to any applicant regardless of whether the condition was previously diagnosed or treated. These exclusions are often invoked after you’ve made a few expensive claims or had symptoms that led you to seek medical care. Thankfully, the ACA has made this practice more rare.

In the past, most health insurers would charge a much higher premium for people with pre-existing conditions. Many health plans would simply decline to cover people with pre-existing conditions, and the result was that they’d be rewarded with a high risk pool. Today, however, these regulations are a welcome change. Even if you’ve previously been turned down for coverage because of a pre-existing condition, you can still get insurance coverage with the right policy.

Types of cancer covered by cancer insurance

The first time people heard about cancer insurance was about 50 years ago, when Aflac and the American Heritage Life Insurance Company introduced it. They did so not to replace health insurance, but to supplement it. Cancer is a common affliction that can leave people with significant out-of-pocket expenses. Today, cancer insurance policies fall into two broad categories: catastrophic coverage and supplemental coverage. The former covers routine medical expenses while catastrophic coverage only covers major health problems that have been diagnosed. Cancer insurance is often bundled with critical illness insurance.

Most cancer insurance policies exclude pre-existing conditions. However, some pre-existing conditions may make you ineligible for coverage. Some cancers are specifically excluded from coverage, such as skin cancer and endometrial cancer. Regardless of your insurance plan’s benefits, it is important to understand the limitations. Some plans only cover outpatient care, while others cover inpatient treatments for all cancers. The length of time after a diagnosis will also play a role in cancer insurance eligibility.
Cost of cancer insurance

Even if you don’t have a family history of the disease, cancer is still an important issue to address. Although five to ten percent of cancers are hereditary, it’s always wise to be financially prepared in case of a diagnosis. There are two main types of cancer insurance policies: the lump sum plan and the schedule of benefits plan. It’s important to understand which type of cancer insurance policy will best suit your needs and budget.

The ACS CAN report from 2020 revealed that most cancer patients reach their out-of-pocket maximums within the first three months of being diagnosed. If out-of-pocket maximums didn’t exist, patients would have to pay tens of thousands of dollars out of their own pocket for treatment. Many cancer patients already have difficulty affording the cost of cancer treatments before they reach the out-of-pocket maximum, and they may not be able to cover all of it with their cancer insurance.

Out-of-pocket expenses

Cancer survivors are more likely than other groups to report high out-of-pocket costs. This is particularly true if they have private health insurance. Public insurance coverage may not provide as much protection as private insurance, and cancer survivors are less likely to report high out-of-pocket expenses. However, a cancer diagnosis can cause financial toxicity. In some cases, it can even lead to job loss.

Costs for treatment varies by type and severity, but in one case a patient paid $6,446 out-of-pocket. Another patient paid $12,026 in the individual market. These two estimates are far from the same, as each patient’s treatment plan is different. The study also highlights other out-of-pocket expenses that a patient may incur, including travel expenses, increased time away from work, and cosmetics.

Formulary of cancer insurance plans

Many health insurance plans will have a formulary of covered drugs. It varies widely depending on the type of health plan and the type of medication you need. For example, some health plans will not cover certain brand-name drugs if they can be obtained at a cheaper price. Also, some plans have tiers of medications, with higher-tier drugs requiring a higher copay. If you’re unsure how to navigate the formulary, ask an insurance representative for help.

While you can often find cancer insurance plans in a formulary of health plans, you should be aware that they don’t provide coverage for routine medical expenses. Moreover, cancer treatment can be costly, and you don’t want to be without insurance coverage when you’re suffering from the disease. That’s why many cancer patients find it useful to get a supplemental health insurance policy. Generally, Medicare-covered cancer treatment costs twenty percent of the policy’s total cost.