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When you need some certainty

16 June, 2017

Dan McKirdy

If you take the time and go to Give a Little, click on the Health tab. Right now you will see 884 campaigns, heart-breaking campaigns, of people who need money to fight disease, get medical treatment, have surgery, or fulfill their final wishes.


Give a little is a fantastic platform that puts charity in the hands of everybody and allows for many people to support many individual causes - it’s the 2017 equivilent of a massive sausage sizzle.


Where I see that this system is not ideal, is that it doesn’t provide certainty, at a time when some certainty would go a long way. This would take the pressure off a family financially – to focus on recovery, not how to meet the mortgage repayments or how to afford the best treatment options.


The lack of certainty is also illustrated by the amounts of money raised. There are casues that have received $50,000 plus, but there are a lot more that have raised a lot less. These are very worthy causes as well, for people who are really battling – such as $23,501 (over 16 months), or $22,472 (over 11 months), or $19,303 (over 12 months).


The amounts of money raised aren’t related to how worthy the cause is, or the severity of the condition, it has a direct relationship to how many people you know within your friend and friends of friends, and how well your cause is marketed – this isn’t certainty.


Insurance is the option to provide some certainty. Lets be perfectly clear, some of these people would not have been unable to get insurance due to previous medical conditions, or age, but a lot  of them would have.


Why didn’t they? Perceived cost? A “she’ll be right attitude”? A reliance on the public health system and welfare support?


Maybe some had insurance, but it wasn’t enough, or it wasn’t structured correctly, or it didn’t cover the medication or treatment that they require.


What would the future look like for them if they had put in place a comprehensive risk plan? - Overseas treatment and medication could be funded. There would be an income to put a roof over their head and food in the fridge,  options to get better on their terms.


New Zealand has the third lowest penetration of life insurance out of the 31 OECD countries. We are estimated to be under insured in life cover by $195.6 billion and in trauma cover by $58.6 billion.


These are massive numbers but they don’t show the human face of the cause of under-insurance. To see this, have a look at some of the heart-breaking stories on Give a Little.


Insurance doesn’t fix every problem when someone needs it, but it goes a very long way to making life easier to focus on what matters. 

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