Disclaimer 1: There is no need to scandalize the title of this post (or go all “haayey Allah!”) since it is not intended to objectify any part of a woman’s body. The aim is to raise awareness about the dreaded C-word when used in conjunction with breasts…Cancer.
October is marked as Breast Cancer Awareness month in various parts of the world. Fundraisers, events and health campaigns are organized to raise awareness about the disease which kills more than 40,000 women every year, in US alone. Having said that, when detected and diagnosed at an early stage, breast cancer patients have a 5-year survival rate ranging between 93% – 100%. Therefore, early detection and diagnosis is the key to fighting a successful battle and ensuring a better quality of life.
Being in my 30s, coming across these stats was highly disturbing for me. However, just fretting over the fact that I could turn into a stat one day, would not solve the problem. Therefore, this year I genuinely decided to think pink and be a good breast friend. Mind you, this doesn’t involve purchasing and sporting a pink ribbon or getting trapped into commercialization of this terrible disease. It quite literally involves walking the talk. Lets discuss.
How to be a good breast friend?
Critical Illness Insurance 101
Disclaimer 2: Having worked a good number of years in insurance industry, I have gained a fair knowledge of how critical illness plans work. That being said, the plans listed below are a mere recommendation. Kindly do your own due diligence if you intend to get enrolled in any of them. You would notice that my recommendations are limited to certain geographies. That’s because I have lived there at some point in time or am currently living there.
Different kinds of illnesses are covered under critical illness insurance plans. Make sure that the one you opt for has breast cancer covered. These plans generally give a lump sum cash amount on diagnosis of cancer. The patient decides if he/she wants to spend it on chemo, surgery, medical tourism, etc.
The list of critical illness insurance plans below will give you a head start on your search for the perfect plan that works best for you.
United States: Check with your insurance provider if your existing coverage covers breast cancer treatment. If you are a US citizen or a green card holder, you might want to consider Critical Illness Insurance by Liberty Mutual or plans similar to it.
Having a Critical illness insurance cover ensures that the financial aspect of breast cancer treatment is taken care off. Even if you never get to use this coverage, there is no price tag attached to having a peace of mind.
Our success in reducing the number of deaths from this disease does not depend on the pink ribbons (or a lack thereof) on our shirts. It depends on making a concerted effort towards supporting research, prevention and treatment of breast cancer.
Since charity begins at home, be mindful of your own bodily changes first. And speak up about breast cancer. Please. Talk to your friends, family members, colleagues and domestic helpers (if any) and educate them. Set a date with your bestie to get a screening done together.
In most societies, it is still a taboo to raise voice about women’s health issues. When we are not ready to acknowledge a problem, how do we expect to find a solution for it?
Lastly, I would like to take a moment to honor all those beautiful women who lost their lives fighting this terrible disease; and to all those who warriored on and came out of it stronger. If you (the reader) are currently battling this disease or have a loved one who is, may the force be with you. Sending prayers and strength your way.
Here’s to being good breast friends!
P.s: If you liked this post, please feel free to share. If it drives even one person to get themselves screened, or make a donation towards this cause, you have done your bit in raising awareness. After all, little drops of water make a mighty ocean. Thanks.