young child in kitchen alone
Keeping children safe can feel like a full time job

Children’s health is really family health

Children getting sick it’s part of life and growing up so we do our best to be prepared for that moment, whenever it may be.

Read in this article:

When a child gets sick, the whole family suffers. Outings get canceled and family plans usually have to be rearranged until they're well again.

Now that might be OK for the usual colds, flues, and scrapped knees, but what happens if your child needs more than a band-aid and some time at home. We know sick children recover faster when they have a loving parent or carer beside them. But for many parents taking time off work to do this just isn’t an option regardless of how important it is and how much the parent wants to be there.

In the same way, we all recognise the necessity of having a family first aid kit on hand, thinking about insuring your children against major medical traumas makes perfect sense - because a sick child is a whole family issue.

What’s possible

Many parents include their whole family, including their children, on their crisis insurance plans

Quick facts about childhood cancers

  • 558,000 children between the age of 0-14 were admitted to hospitals in 2007-2008
  • 200,000 children fall critically ill each year in Australia
  • More than 710 children aged 0-14 are diagnosed with cancer each year in Australia and on average ten children die of cancer each month

The good news is that medical intervention and earlier detection means the mortality rates are dropping, but we’re not at zero yet and a full recovery can take years and the bills pile up.

Parents of sick children all agree

If your child suffered a medical trauma it's only natural you’d want to:

  • Get the best medical treatments money could buy anywhere in the world
  • Ensure your child is as comfortable as possible
  • Have all the time off work you need to be there with them.

While money can’t buy a quick recovery, it can ease the financial pressures you and your family will face.

Tylers Story: Four year old Tyler pulled a hot saucepan of partly-made hot toffee onto himself the night before his planned birthday party was to happen and caused burns to his face and hands. Fortunately, on Tyler’s 2nd birthday his grandparents paid for their grandchildren to have Children’s Crisis Insurance put into place as part of the family’s protection plan.

This meant a claim for $75,000 was immediately available for;

  • Using the top burns surgeon in Australia
  • A part-time home visit nanny to look after the other children, and
  • Tyler’s mother was able to take six months off work and prepay 6 months of advanced mortgage repayments to be with Tyler during his many operations

Tyler’s family had a lot of challenges to work through. Thankfully, concerns about money weren’t one of them.

What's involved?

Crisis insurance can pay a lump cash sum if the life insured suffer one of the policy’s listed medical conditions.

This cover is available for adults and for their children too. In fact, some insurance companies provide partial automatic child cover if parents take out their own crisis insurance cover.

Q: Is this the same as private health cover?
No private health insurance is only part of the story. Private health insurance only covers hospital stays and some medical/extras expenses. It won’t cover long-term rehabilitation, alterations to your home for mobility reasons or long-term nursing care.

Q: How do I know the best option for me?
That’s where you need Sapience. You can contact us here.

What can the children’s crisis insurance lump sum for?

The cost associated with serious injuries can add up. You can use the lump sum insurance payment for all sorts of services including:

  • Seeking specialist or overseas medical treatment
  • Nursing home care
  • Home or car modifications
  • Meeting other financial commitments, such as a mortgage, child care or school fees if you’re not able to work while caring for your child

The technical stuff makes this a good idea to consider

  • The minimum age of entry for this type of policy is 2 years of age.
  • The minimum amount of cover you can purchase starts from $10,000 and the maximum is over $250,000.
  • The lump sum insurance payout  is tax-free and can be used to meet additional expenses when you need it most.

The real benefit is hidden in the detail

Children’s crisis cover usually covers a smaller number of medical issues than a full adult policy.

One of the best features may be that a policy taken out as a child, can later transfer to a full adult policy at age 18 – and here’s the important thing to understand – without any new medical assessment or interview needed – regardless of any changes in your health or occupation.

The sooner you take out a child crisis policy the better because some longer-term health issues don’t show up till later in life.

These types of policies can be a game changer for young families and single parents who would struggle financially if one of their children were to suffer a major medical crisis.

Emma's Story: Emma’s parents thought she’d brought home yet another cough from the child care centre. When the symptoms persisted for some time they went back to their GP who offered a blood test. The results showed Emma had leukaemia. Emma was soon in and out of the children’s hospital on a regular basis and had chemotherapy for twelve months and her parents moved house to be closer to the hospital.

Fortunately Ben and Rachel didn’t have to worry about financial issues as well at this difficult time. Their financial adviser had them take out child crisis cover as soon as Emma reached 2 years of age (the earliest possible time when she would qualify for child crisis insurance). As soon as they received Emma’s initial diagnosis of leukaemia their adviser helped them lodge a claim and they received $187,000 as a lump sum payment. Finally, after two years, the doctors gave Emma an optimistic prognosis.

With this money they were able to cover;

  • Rachel gave up her job so she could become a full-time carer for Emma
  • Hotel stays so visiting grandparents could visit Emma at the hospital without putting additional pressure on the remaining family
  • A live-in-nanny for 5 months to help stabilise the family unit and the remaining 2 children
  • And a much-needed family holiday to Disneyland once Emma had recovered.

To say that Ben and Rachel were relieved that they were able to give Emma and her two siblings all the attention they required during this terrible family year is an understatement. Emma is doing great now and wants to be a Doctor when she grows up (or a Disney princess.)

author pic drew browneDrew Browne is a specialty Financial Risk Advisor working with Small Business Owners & their Families, Dual Income Professional Couples, and diverse families. He's an award-winning writer, speaker, financial adviser and business strategy mentor. His business Sapience Financial Group is committed to using business solutions for good in the community. In 2015 he was certified as a B Corp., and in 2017 was recognised in the inaugural Australian National Businesses of Tomorrow Awards. Today he advises Small Business Owners and their families, on how to protect themselves, from their businesses.  He writes for successful Small Business Owners and Industry publications. You can read his Modern Small Business Leadership Blog here. You can connect with him on LinkedIn Any information provided is general advice only and we have not considered your personal circumstances. Before making any decision on the basis of this advice you should consider if the advice is appropriate for you based on your particular circumstance.

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