‘Cancer patients have the right to be forgotten’ is the strong statement being brought forward by campaign group, Youth Cancer Europe.
As it currently stands some medical conditions including cancer, diabetes and strokes will need to be declared when buying a travel insurance policy regardless of whether the condition is in remission, stable or the time-frame since diagnosis.
Youth Cancer Europe has submitted a white paper asking the UK government to make a change to travel insurance medical declarations which will mean cancer survivors do not have to declare cancer after 10 years of remission, or five years for anyone 18 years or under at the time of diagnosis.
One of the main reasons for this lobbying is the cost people are being charged for travel insurance, even when the condition is in remission or many years after the initial diagnosis.
This is on consumer awareness campaign, Travel Insurance Explained’s (TIE) agenda. We are working with the industry to implement a signposting service which is robust, transparent and has cross-industry support from travel insurance providers, insurers, charities, trade bodies and government agencies.
Following our Roundtable earlier this month, it is clear the travel insurance industry recognises the need for change and that easy access to suitable and appropriately priced travel insurance for people with all medical conditions and non-standard needs, not just cancer, should be at the forefront of everyone’s mind.
Many consumers who wish to travel following a cancer diagnosis, whether that’s in remission or treatment is ongoing, struggle to find a suitable travel insurance policy and are often faced with incredibly high prices, particularly if they use a provider they used pre-diagnosis. However, there are travel insurers providers and products that do offer cover for these types of risks at more appropriate prices, but the issue is helping the consumer easily find them.
TIE is working hard to ensure the signposting to these companies that can help is easily accessible, whichever way the consumer first accesses the travel insurance market.
Chris Lewis, co-founder of Your Sim Pal and cancer survivor, commented: “Cancer patients are discriminated against, by so many large institutions, and travel insurance is one of the worst sectors currently. I have experienced many times the prices quoted being more than the travel itself! Most companies are not interested in looking at individual risk, which is what is really needed. My own treatment was complex and so are the late effects, but this year I have travelled to Florida, Palestine and Kuala Lumpur.
“My insurance for Florida was approximately £200. I always use Insurancewith who have specialist knowledge regarding long term health conditions thus enabling me to find affordable travel insurance.
“There are specialist companies out there, but they can be difficult to find. It’s so encouraging that Travel Insurance Explained have taken up the challenge with regards to the FCA’s Access to Travel Insurance report and are working across the insurance industry on making sure people like me are signposted to the most suitable policy and that the signposting is transparent and robust. As I have seen, affordable travel insurance after a cancer diagnosis is available you just need to know where to look’