The True Cost of Cancer

caancerSeptember is not just Childhood Cancer Awareness Month but also host to the highly popular World’s Biggest Coffee Morning for MacMillan Cancer Support and Dryathlon for Cancer Research UK.

Many of us will be hosting or attending coffee mornings and some of us may even be going dry for September to help raise funds for cancer. With almost half the UK population estimated to be diagnosed with a form of cancer within their lifetime[1] you’ll be hard pressed to find someone that has not known someone affected, or been affected themselves, by cancer. MacMillan Cancer Support estimated that by the end of 2016 1,000 people will be diagnosed with cancer every day.[2]

But it’s not all doom and gloom… while incidents of cancer may be on the rise, so are survival rates. People are living 10 times longer after a cancer diagnosis than they were 40 years ago and half of people with cancer are expected to survive for at least 10 years.[3] But is just surviving cancer enough?

Let’s take a closer look at costs. Macmillan’s ‘Cancer’s Hidden Price Tag’[4] research report reveals the sheer scale of the financial burden faced by people living with cancer. On average:

  • Four out of five cancer patients lose £570 a month.
  • One in three loses £860 a month in earnings because they are unable to work or have to cut down their hours.
  • Six in seven see their monthly expenses increase by £270 a month.

The cost of cancer is calculated as the loss of income and the additional costs experienced as a result of a person’s diagnosis.

MacMillan also looked into what surviving cancer looks like and found that around 25% of survivors deal with poor health or disability after treatment ends and estimated that 500,000 living with cancer in 2010 have one or more physical or psychosocial consequences that affects their lives long-term.[5] While it’s great news that more and more people are surviving a cancer diagnosis and getting the all clear after treatment that doesn’t necessarily mean you will be fighting fit and back to what was “normal” before your diagnosis. It can be a tough pill to swallow once the new picture of your future becomes clear.

You can’t protect yourself from getting diagnosed with cancer but you can be prepared financially if you are diagnosed. How would you deal with a diagnosis? Advances in medicine and rising survival mean you may recover from your illness but what if you could not cope with going back to work?

You can do more than just survive cancer, having proper protection in place means you will continue living with minimal disruption once you have undergone treatment and fully recovered.

For more information about critical illness cover, call 01224 316200 or fill in our online enquiry form

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