I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Aflac. I received a promotional item as a thank you for participating.
Have you seen the Aflac duck recovery progress commercials? I saw it a few times when I was watching TV last week and I thought that it was really funny. But, not having enough money to pay for out of pocket expenses while you are trying to recover from an illness is no laughing matter. If you have been a long time follower of my blog, you probably already know about how my mother passed away from breast cancer. That was an eye opening experience for us. Even though my parents had excellent medical coverage, they certainly did not expect all of other out of pocket expenses that were piling up at an alarming rate.
Even at $10 co-pay for each prescription, my father was paying over $200 a month for her medications. On top of that, he had to take more than a couple of months off work in order to take her in for her daily radiation treatments (because my mother had a very aggressive form of breast cancer). For awhile we relied on friends and other family members to help out, but because my mother required so much care, I left school and my father took time off from work to give her the around the clock care she needed. My mother was extremely ill, the cost of caring for her was weighting heavily on us and on top of that, my father wasn't working so we had no income coming in. I remembered family discussions about selling our home to pay off all the bills. We were faced with losing both my mother and the house we lived in, it was a very scary time for us.
A few years ago, my husband injured his back. There were many visits to the ER, numerous doctor's appointments and many missed work days. Although it was not as scary as what I went through with my parents, it was still a tough time for us. We did not know how long it would take for my husband to recover. Each missed work day meant that we would face more financial uncertainty.
The experiences I had taught me the importance of supplemental insurance. No one expects major illnesses or medical emergencies, but having supplemental insurance gives you the peace of mind you need when it happens. It allows you to take care of your family and loved ones without the worries over basic necessaries like having a roof over your head or food on your table.
Before going through those experiences, I foolishly thought that having great medical coverage is enough. If our needs are taken care of at the hospital, that should have been enough. However, it is not enough. I did not consider how quickly co-pays add up when you experience a long term illness, or the fact that you or your love ones might need to miss days, weeks or even months from work due to the medical emergency. When you only have expenses but no income, it is very hard trying to recover without the extra added stress.
If you are trying to decide if supplemental insurance is right for you, I highly recommend checking out the Aflac Real Cost Calculator. You might be surprised by how expensive everything is. I input my information for breast cancer, and the real cost is around 86,000. Because I have gone through it with my mother, I was not at all shock at the cost listed. As I have mentioned before, seeing the bills coming in everyday when my mother was ill was a real eye opener for me. My mother passed away within a year from her diagnose and her cancer emptied out their saving's account -- money that they have been saving for over 20 years for their retirements. I simply could not even begin to imagine how financially devastated other families would be with other long term illnesses.
The Real Cost Calculator is easy to use and gives you a good idea of how much some medical emergencies would cost a family. Please take a moment to check it out. After doing so, if you feel that your family might not be able to cover all of the expenses, I urge you to look into supplemental insurance. I, for one, believe that it's something my family could have really benefited from.