May is Stroke Awareness Month and new research has identified financial protection has become a lower priority for many families.
According to the research, only 39% of us believe that protecting our families in the event of death is essential.
This has fallen from 53% over the past four years.
Only 28% believe that financial security for dependents in the event of becoming critically ill is a necessity.
In stark contrast to this need for financial protection, 80% of us consider broadband Internet as essential for daily living. 71% can’t get by without a mobile phone.
Stroke Awareness Month in May seems an opportune time to highlight our collective lack of financial protection should a serious health condition like a Stroke be diagnosed.
Stroke occurs approximately 152,000 times a year in the UK – that’s once every three minutes and 27 seconds – and there are more than 1.2 million stroke survivors.
It’s the single largest cause of death in the UK and second in the world, and by the age of 75, 1 in 5 women and 1 in 6 men will have a stroke.
According to Scottish Widows, Stroke was the third largest cause of critical illness claims for the insurance provider in 2014. It was their fifth largest cause of life cover claims.
The insurer paid out more than £10.3 million for these claims, which is the equivalent of just under £40,000 every working day that year.
The average age of people who claimed for stroke-related critical illness claims was 48 for women and 50 for men.
Two thirds of life cover claimants were male, compared with 54% for critical illness.
Scott Cadger, Head of Underwriting and Claims Strategy at Scottish Widows, says:
“It’s worrying that many people consider internet connection and mobile phones to be greater financial priorities than protecting themselves and their families.
“Something like a stroke can often result in disruption to an individual’s ability to work and the loss of income for a pivotal member of the family can have huge repercussions for those who depend on them.
“It’s human nature to avoid thinking about the worst, but the peace of mind that financial protection provides can be very liberating.”