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Cancer is Singapore’s leading cause of death. One in every four to five people in Singapore may develop cancer in their lifetime, and the number continues to rise1. So, one’s chances of getting diagnosed with cancer can be significant.
While many people may own critical illness insurance policies, few ever really think about how to make an insurance claim until they are diagnosed with cancer though the claims process for common cancers such as breast cancer for women and colorectal cancer for men may be rather straightforward.
But what happens when you are diagnosed with a rare cancer?
Battling a rare cancer
Ms Mok found that out the hard way when she was diagnosed with sarcoma, a rare type of blood cancer that scientists are still baffled as to its causes. To make matters worse, detection and diagnosis of the condition are very difficult, and symptoms vary greatly depending on the location of the tumour.
What followed was a series of treatments which included surgery to remove a tumour in the lung area and radiotherapy treatments that were both physically and emotionally draining. Radiotherapy is a very painful and exhausting process with side effects ranging from nausea and vomiting to skin issues. Ms Mok also experienced persistent coughing as her treatment was centered on the chest area.
But the challenges didn’t stop there. Ms Mok sought treatment as a private patient and did not receive any subsidies. As a result, she ended up forking out about $50,000 out of pocket over a period of four months.
Her consultations prior to surgery amounted to about $2,000, while the operation to remove the tumour cost about $20,000. She also had to pay about $20,000 for post-surgery radiotherapy.
It could have been worse, though. As Ms Mok was still working, she was able to go on paid medical leave for the duration of her treatment, which enabled her to continue receiving her usual salary during that period.
How insurance helped her get back on her feet
Getting diagnosed with and treated for cancer is traumatic for anyone, but Ms Mok was lucky enough to have adequate insurance coverage, which helped with her finances and reduced her stress levels.
Having a critical illness plan proved to be a lifesaver. Her illness was classified as major cancer and thus covered under the plan. The plan would later offer her a payout which help to boost her finances during this trying period.
Singlife’s claims process turned out to be extremely simple and fast. While recovering from surgery and before the start of her radiotherapy sessions, she submitted her claim and was informed almost immediately that Singlife had received it. Singlife then followed up via phone and email to request a copy of outstanding documents. Once Singlife received it, she was informed that her claim was successful and her payout was disbursed the very next day.
Ms Mok credits Singlife with helping her through what must have been the toughest period in her life. The payout she received from her critical illness plan not only covered all the costs she had paid out of pocket, but also gave her additional financial support while she was recovering.
The warm and sympathetic service she received from Singlife also lifted her spirits, and she does not recall ever having been treated so well other insurers. To a cancer patient, care and kindness can make a significant difference in offering hope and the strength to continue fighting.
Singlife not only offers insurance protection, but also ensures that the entire claims process is as smooth and pleasant as possible. You can find out more about Singlife’s Critical Illness Plans here.
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The information in this article is correct at time of publishing.
This article is merely for educational purpose and does not consider your specific investment objectives, financial situation or needs. The contents are for general information and do not constitute or form any recommendation of insurance plan. We recommend that you seek advice from a financial planner before making a commitment to purchase a policy.