More than two-thirds of Canadian women (67%) are worried about the potential financial implications of cancer diagnoses, says BMO Insurance.

Its recent study finds 68% of women have been impacted by cancer, whether through a family member or personal diagnosis. Further, 78% are concerned about the possibility of being diagnosed.

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“Advances in medicine [mean] an increasing number of Canadians are beating the disease,” says Julie Barker-Merz, vice-president and COO of BMO Insurance. [But] the costs associated with treatment have risen, however,” and the last thing people is financial stress when dealing with a diagnosis.

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According to the Canadian Cancer Society, the annual household loss from cancer was nearly $18,000. What’s more, one-in-six Ontario cancer patients reported that out-of-pocket costs were significant or unmanageable.

That’s why some companies are introducing insurance solutions for women afflicted with common female cancers.

Taking action

Women are also taking steps to protect themselves from Breast Cancer, says the BMO study. That’s the most common cancer diagnosis in Canadian women over the age of 20, and one of the leading causes of death nationwide.

Read: Will a misdiagnosis affect CI premiums?

The study found women are:

  • conducting proper self-exams (51%);
  • getting mammograms (40%);
  • visited their doctors for exams (38%);
  • asked their doctors about cancer (26%); and
  • donating to cancer charities (50% of Canadians, both men and women, are doing so.)

“As a society we’re becoming increasingly aware of the importance of early detection of Breast Cancer,” noted Barker-Merz. “However, the study’s numbers indicate we still have some way to go.”


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