Facts - Cancer, Heart Attack, Stroke and Critical Illness Insurance

The latest facts and the most relevant information regarding cancer, heart attacks, strokes and cancer / critical illness insurance shared by the American Association for Critical Illness Insurance.

You may use these facts with the appropriate credit to the Association or the pertinent source of the facts and data.  Thank you.

Most relevant facts and statistics related to critical illness insurance

Heart attack risks for men and women, ages for diagnosis, survival rate and more. Click here.

Cancer risks, ages for diagnosis, survival rate and critical illness insurance claims.  Click this link.

Stroke risks, average ages, survival rates and claims info.

2020 critical illness insurance data.  Policies, in-force, buyers and claims.  Access here.

Cancer

The lifetime probability is slightly higher for men (40.1%) than for women (38.7%).  The overall cancer incidence rate in men declined rapidly from 2007 to 2014, but stabilized through 2016.  The overall cancer incidence rate in women has remained generally stable over the past few decades.

Source:  Cancer Statistics, 2020, American Cancer Society, Jan/Feb 2020

The 5-year cancer survival rate for all cancers combined during 2009 through 2015 was 67% overall, 68% in whites and 62% in blacks.  Survival is highest for prostate cancer (98%), female breast cancer (90%) and lowest for cancers of the pancreas (9%), live (18%), lung (19%), and esophagus (20%).

Source:  Cancer Statistics, 2020, American Cancer Society, Jan/Feb 2020

Estimated new cancer cases in the United States (2020)

  • Total (Both Sexes): 1,806,590
  • Men: 893,660
  • Women: 912,930

Source: American Cancer Society, Cancer Journal, Jan/Feb 2020

Probability of Developing invasive cancer (2014-2016)

  • Men ages 55 to 59 - 6.2% (1 in 16)
  • Women ages 55 to 59 - 6.4% (1 in 16)

For people without a history of cancer at beginning if age interval.
Source: American Cancer Society, Cancer Journal, Jan/Feb 2020

Probability of Developing invasive cancer (2014-2016):

  • Men ages 55 to 59 - 13.3% (1 in 8)
    Women ages 55 to 59 - 10.2.4% (1 in 10)
  • For people without a history of cancer at beginning if age interval.

Source: American Cancer Society, Cancer Journal, Jan/Feb 2020

Heart Attack

Approximately every 40 seconds an American will have a heart attack.  That amounts to around 788,000 heart attacks in 2020.

Source:  Heart Disease and Stroke Statistical 2020 Update, American Heart Association

The average age at the first heart attack was 65.6 years for males and 72.0 years for females.

Source:  Heart Disease and Stroke Statistical 2020 Update, American Heart Association

Per 1,000 people, the annual number of adults having a heart attack.  For men the number is 75 for ages 45 to 54, 125 for ages 55 to 64 and 125 for ages 65 to 74.  For women, the number is 35 for ages 45 to 54, 60 for ages 55 to 64 and 70 for ages 65 to 74.

Source: American Heart Association report: Circulation, January 27, 2015

As a percent of the population, the likelihood for men is 6.3% between ages 40 and 59, 19.9% between ages 60 and 79.  For women it is 5.6% between ages 40 and 59 and 9.7% between ages 60 and 79.

Source: American Heart Association report: Circulation, January 27, 2015

Stroke

Approximately every 40 seconds an American will have a stroke.  That amounts to around 788,000 strokes in 2020.  Stroke was a leading cause of serious long-term disability in the U.S.

Source:  Heart Disease and Stroke Statistical 2020 Update, American Heart Association

As a percent of the population, the likelihood for men is 1.9% between ages 40 and 59, 6.1% between ages 60 and 79.  For women it is 2.2% between ages 40 and 59 and 5.2% between ages 60 and 79.

Source: American Heart Association report: Circulation, January 27, 2015

About a quarter (25%) of all strokes occur in people under age 65.  The risk of having a stroke more than doubles each decade after the age of 55.

Source: The Internet Stroke Center

A 5-year survival rate study of first stroke patients found that 60% of those who suffered an ischemic stroke survived 1 year.  Some 31% survived 5 years.  The 5-year survival rate was 57% for those 50 or younger and only 9% for those 70 or older.

Source: Five year survival after first ever stroke, Smaijovic D., August 2006

The risk of ischemic stroke in current smokers is about double that of nonsmokers after adjustment for other risk factors.

Source: The Internet Stroke Center

Critical Illness Insurance

Some six million Americans currently own a form of insurance coverage that pays a cash benefit upon the diagnosis of a critical illness reports the American Association for Critical Illness Insurance.

Source:  American Association for Critical Illness Insurance, January 2020

Between 1.5 and 1.6 six million Americans will purchase a cancer-only or critical illness insurance policy reports the American Association for Critical Illness Insurance.

Source:  American Association for Critical Illness Insurance, January 2020

  • For traditional individual critical illness insurance:  $21,993
  • For group/worksite (attained age premium):  $14,766
  • For group/worksite (issue age level premium):  $14,671

Source:  Gen Re, U.S. Critical Illness Insurance Market Survey, 2016/2017 Report

  • For traditional individual critical illness insurance:  46.0
  • For group/worksite (attained age premium):  42.2
  • For group/worksite (issue age level premium):  41.2

Source:  Gen Re, U.S. Critical Illness Insurance Market Survey, 2016/2017 Report

  • For traditional individual critical illness insurance:  60.0
  • For group/worksite (attained age premium):  50.2
  • For group/worksite (issue age level premium):  50.4

Source:  Gen Re, U.S. Critical Illness Insurance Market Survey, 2016/2017 Report

  • For traditional individual critical illness insurance:  $12,028
  • For group/worksite (attained age premium):  $12,090
  • For group/worksite (issue age level premium):  $10,920

Source:  Gen Re, U.S. Critical Illness Insurance Market Survey, 2016/2017 Report

Best Resources for Critical Illness Insurance Facts

We’d like to share a few resources.  For heart disease information visit the Centers for Disease Control.

A great resource for cancer information is the American Cancer Society.

Tips from the Association Director

Because the risks are real, we share the following information and tips.
Firstly, even the best health insurance today doesn’t cover everything.
Specifically you likely will pay high deductibles .  Likewise you will also face co-pays.  These can cost you thousands of dollars.
Additionally you will likely need to take time off from work for treatments and to recover.
Subsequently you’ll have no income to cover the bills that will keep piling up.
Specifically that’s where a cancer-only or comprehensive critical illness insurance comes in. 
Whenever possible we recommend seeking one policy that offers both options.
Certainly the cancer-only option will be less costly.  Overall it should cost about one-third as much.
Finally, critical illness insurance can be far more affordable than you think.  Especially if you price just a modest amount, generally between $10,000 and $25,000.

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