The Heart of the Matter: Need to Know Info About Cover for your Heart

It’s February, let’s celebrate the month of love and the end of Janu-worry! On Valentines Day, we celebrate love by bombarding those dear to us with pink and red hearts. It seems fitting that February is also the National Heart Month and is, therefore, a perfect time to take steps toward being heart healthy and reflect on the cover you have for your ticker. It is crucial to follow up on healthy behaviours, such as improving eating habits and regular exercise, with the right insurance cover. Here are some of the frequently asked questions that we receive regarding heart cover:

1. What happens if you already have a heart condition when applying for life insurance?

Having a heart condition does not necessarily mean that you cannot get cover. Rather than not offering you cover, insurance companies tend to offer one of the following:

· For life cover, insurers may apply a ‘loading’. In this case, you will still receive coverage for your heart but pay a higher premium than the average person for this cover. The additional premium is determined by how severe the heart condition is or was, the results of any check-ups as well as the state of your health when you apply for the insurance.

· For severe illness, disability or impairment cover, insurers may choose to apply an ‘exclusion’. This means that there may be certain conditions that you cannot claim on, such as heart attack. You need to be aware of these exclusions as they can come back to bite you. For example, did you know that some insurance companies only cover the left side of the heart and not the right? In circumstances where the insurer pays out for a heart attack on the right-hand side, they may This Also, did you know that some insurers will only pay 50% of the benefit if you experience a second heart attack? These are all factors that you need to consider when purchasing insurance.

2. Is cover with a loading or an exclusion still worth it?

If you currently have or previously had a heart condition, it is easy to believe that you cannot get coverage or that you cannot afford the cover offered to you. It is also easy to think that your heart condition is the only life-threatening that you will have to face and there is, therefore, no point to get cover if you’re going to end up with an exclusion or an unaffordable loading.

But nothing can be further from the truth. What is, in fact, important is that either one of these options can actually be a good thing. In many cases, an exclusion means that you can get cover (for most things except the specified condition) at a similar price as the average person rather than having nothing in place. Likewise, with a loading, while you may have to pay more for your cover, you will still be insured for most conditions, including your heart disease.

It can be especially intimidating applying for insurance if you have a health condition such as a heart disease. For this reason, it is important to consult with an independent financial advisor (IFA), who are knowledgeable about the vast products available in the industry. As such, they are able to not only find cover that is the right fit for you but also negotiate with various insurers on your behalf.

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