Income protection insurance for medical professionals
There are many types of medical professional working in the UK. This includes general practitioners, registered nurses, midwives, psychiatrists and many more. All these career paths are rewarding and demanding in their own ways.
With demanding careers such as these, illness and injury can have a notable impact on the ability to perform your job role. This means it may be necessary to take some time off to ensure you are at your best to help your patients.
A policy like income protection can be very beneficial under these circumstances. It can support you in paying your monthly bills whilst recovering from illness or injury.
On this page we will give you information on what income protection is and why it is a great policy for someone working in a medical setting.
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What is income protection insurance?
Income protection insurance can be very beneficial. It ensures financial stability if you are unable to work due to illness or injury for an extended period of time.
Once your sick pay eligibility has expired, income protection will be able to provide you with monthly payments to help support you as you recover. This means there is no need to rush back to work if you don’t feel ready to return yet.
An income protection policy will provide a tax-free payment every month, usually worth around 50%-70% of your usual salary before income taxes. This can be used to help pay for large expenses such as mortgage repayments, car finance or even medical bills.
You may need to provide medical evidence such as fit note from your doctor, as proof you are not currently working due to illness or injury.
Once your claim has been approved, you will start receiving these payments directly to your bank account. The payments will continue until your claim period ends or you are well enough to return to work.
Do medical professionals need income protection?
Income protection will allow you the peace of mind to take as much time off as you need to make sure you are fully recovered. It is similar to critical illness insurance but that will only provide one lump sum. Income protection will give you a steady income stream, with payments every month.
Of course, NHS sick pay and SSP will provide funds for a time. There is a time limit on how long you can claim for though. Income protection pay outs can provide support for much longer periods of time.
As a medical professional, you may even have access to specialised policies or rates compared to standard income protection.
Whether this is the case will depend on individual providers. This can sometimes lead to preferential pricing, so it is something that is definitely worth looking into.
Deferred period for income protection
A great way of saving money when it comes to income protection would be to consider your deferment period. An income protection policy will always have a set deferment period put in place when taking out the policy.
A deferment period refers to the amount of time between your first day off sick and receiving your first insurance pay out. Usually, the longer the deferment period is the cheaper the policy will be.
Medical workers can often access NHS sick pay for up to 12 months if having been in service for 5 or more years. This can mean you will be able to defer the start of your payments for this amount of time. This will usually be for longer than someone only on statutory sick pay (SSP). You can only get SSP for up to 28 weeks.
NHS sick pay
Like any other profession, often doctors, dentists or nurses can end up needing time off work to recover from illnesses or injuries.
If you are a NHS worker, you will be entitled to NHS sick pay. The maximum amount of paid time off sick with the NHS would be 6 months fully paid leave followed by 6 months on half pay. This would be available after 5 years of working for the NHS.
The below list illustrates the amount of paid sick leave an NHS staff member can access depending on their length of service:
- During the first year: 1 month full pay, 2 months half pay
- During the second year: 2 months full pay, 2 months half pay
- During the third year: 4 months full pay, 4 months half pay
- During the fourth and fifth years: 5 months full pay, 5 months half pay
- After the fifth year of service: 6 months full pay and 6 months half pay
Whilst NHS or statutory sick pay can provide support for a while, eventually eligibility for this will run out. This means you may feel rushed to return to work before being fully recovered so you can pay your bills.
Income protection can continue to provide you with funds if you need more time off to recover. This is a great comfort to those suffering with significant injuries or illnesses.
Why is income protection important for medical professionals?
With the higher risk of illness from working in a medical setting, income protection insurance is a very sensible policy to have in place.
In recent years, Covid-19 has been a significant risk to anyone working in a healthcare setting. This can be from working with Covid-19 patients directly, or from being in close contact with others as the virus is airborne.
Other airborne diseases can of course be transmitted within a medical environment, leaving nurses and other healthcare workers at increased risk.
There is also the increased possibility of developing other conditions such as issues with back or muscle pain. This due to these job roles being so physically demanding in a lot of cases.
What factors can affect the price of my income protection insurance policy?
There are various things that can affect the price of any insurance policy. This applies whether that’s traditional life insurance, critical illness cover or income protection insurance. These are factors such as:
- Age – consider putting cover in place as early in life as possible as pricing can be much lower than if you take out cover later in life
- Comparing providers comparing the pricing across insurance providers, will often reveal one or two with a much lower policy price for your needs
- Get advice – speaking to an income protection expert is a good idea as they can advise you on the best insurers and policies available currently
- Improving health and lifestyle –lifestyle changes such as losing weight can help to reduce the price of premiums
- Smoking – insurance cover for smokers can be more expensive, so it is a good idea to quit or cut back to reduce the cost of your policy
- Pre-existing conditions – if you have pre-existing medical conditions that may affect the price of your premiums, speak to an insurance expert for more advice
It is a good idea to think about all the above factors when estimating how much your policy may cost.
Income protection for doctors
There are many types of doctors in the UK including general practitioners, surgeons, chiropractors and many more. All these job roles can be physically and mentally demanding, which could eventually lead to illness or injury.
Income protection can be very helpful under these circumstances. Even though NHS sick pay, SSP or savings can support you for a while, income protection pay outs can provide an extra level of protection.
This can be a great relief, knowing there is a minimised risk of debt build up or financial difficulty while recovering.
Income protection for nurses
Nurses can be at risk of developing various illnesses or injuries whilst carrying out their duties. When on their feet and rushing around for hours at a time, this can certainly influence their general health.
If nurses develop illnesses or injuries, either in or out of work, it can lead to needing time off to recover. Whilst they can claim NHS or statutory sick pay (SSP) for a set period of time, this will not provide support indefinitely.
Income protection can act as a safety net. This policy can provide you with additional funds. This is helpful if an extended recovery period is necessary. This way you can be back at your best before a return to work.
Dentists income protection
Dentists, like doctors work in very close proximity to their patients. This means there can be an increased risk of catching various illnesses.
Unless working as part of a completely private practice, dentists will generally qualify for NHS sick pay. This can be a great help for shorter periods of absence due to illness or injury.
If seriously ill or injured, NHS sick pay may not cover the amount of time necessary for a full recovery. In this situation, having income protection in place will be a great financial safeguard. It can be the difference between struggling and being able to pay your bills comfortably.
Income protection insurance for vets
Vets provide a vital service for pet owners across the UK. They ensure your beloved pets are happy and healthy – and work long hours doing so.
This consistent heavy workload can be taxing and lead to the development of various illnesses or injuries. As well as this vets will not be entitled to claim NHS sick pay as they do not operate as part of that organisation.
Vets can often be self-employed as well, operating their own clinics. This means if they do not work, they do not get paid at all. Income protection insurance is a policy that can be extremely useful under these circumstances.
Income protection insurance advice
You may think you would benefit from income protection insurance but are unsure where to find the best policy. Speak to one of our insurance EXPERTS for FREE advice.
Our team are specialists when it comes to income protection. We can compare prices and policies across a wide range of providers – ensuring you are receiving the best possible policy for your needs and budget.
Useful resources for medical professionals
Below we have linked some useful resources for medical professionals: