Colorectal Cancer Awareness: Are You Eligible For Life Insurance?

SGNA, the Society of Gastroenterology Nurses and Associates Inc. has three words to describe colorectal cancer: preventable, treatable and beatable.

Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths and the risk increases with age since more than 90 percent of people over 50 are affected. Increasing awareness and screening early is key to decreasing mortality rates.

Risk factors for developing colorectal cancer include family history of cancer or polyps, inherited conditions, diet, age, inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease) and a personal history of polyps. A prior history of colorectal cancer increases the risk of other colon tumors.

And when asked about how life insurance underwriting is viewed, Mike Bruce from LifeQuotes, Inc comments that many underwriters look at the heredity factor. Have other family members been diagnosed?

Ratings will depend on stage and time since the end of treatment. In some instances, waiting to get life insurance is the best option. Tumor tables are actually devised to determine the position of the tumor and if it has spread to distant sites such as the liver, lung and ovary. As the stage increases, the more difficult it is to get life insurance. But there is never a dead end when it comes to protecting you, your family or your financial future.

Underwriting concerns for life insurance include the following:

  • Diagnosis and pathological report
  • Cancer treatments used
  • Treatment completion
  • Medications prescribed
  • Stage of cancer
  • Recurrence
  • Last colonoscopy and CEA level
  • Smoked cigarettes in the last year
  • Other health problems

However, if employed and diagnosed positive for colorectal cancer, it will be to your benefit to take out employer life insurance while working. Also, you may be eligible for an additional guaranteed issued policy as Mike Bruce recommends. These policies are growing in popularity and insurance companies are offering more flexibility. The policies are generally smaller in benefits but will certainly pay for final expenses and then some if needed. Some may be graded which means that it will only pay a full amount if you outlive the time set by the insurance company.

Millions are declined for life insurance because they do not do the necessary homework. Talking to to qualified insurance specialist who will research various life insurance companies that offer the best solution to meet your needs is always the best policy. Spend time to buy the policy that is right for you.

March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month and one of the ways to spread awareness is if you haven’t been screened, talk to a health professional to schedule an exam. Colorectal cancer screening rates have been increasing and according to the National Colorectal Cancer RoundTable during the past 10 years, there has been a 30 percent reduction in CRC mortality. Currently, about 65 percent of individuals over age 50 years have had some form of CRC screening.

How can you spread awareness?

Dress in Blue which supports all forms of colon cancer originally established by the Colon Cancer Alliance. Every year it is celebrated in March. You can hold a Dress in Blue Day fundraiser which will help support financial assistance programs sponsored by the Alliance.

The American Cancer Society urges “Early detection which is critical and some screening tools can actually prevent colon cancer, but not enough people are getting tested. That’s why an effort like this is so important.”

It is the same with life insurance. Not enough individuals recognize the importance and affordability especially when young before health and age becomes a critical issue.

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