For employers: The 4 ways cancer support complements PMI
Quicker diagnoses and staff engagement
Private Medical Insurance (PMI) gives employees benefits including reduced waiting times and quicker diagnoses. And treatment funded outside the NHS.
For employers, offering PMI drives staff engagement and boosts productivity. It can help an organisation to cultivate a culture of wellbeing. And to retain its top talent.
Private medical insurance + cancer support
If an organisation offers PMI to its employees, why offer cancer support as well? In this 8th Cancer in the Workplace article, we’re exploring how our proposition adds value alongside private medical insurance.
“Cancer doesn’t discriminate according to pay or title.”
1. Not just for senior employees
Cancer doesn’t discriminate according to pay level or job title. So we designed our cancer support service so it can be offered as a universal benefit, too.
An employer can demonstrate its commitment to supporting an entire workforce from as little as single digit pounds per year, per person. This gives the business a cost-effective way to extend a healthcare benefit to its wider workforce. And to show that it cares about everybody it employs equally. Not just its senior management team.
“Private medical insurance drives staff engagement and boosts productivity. It can also help an organisation to cultivate a culture of wellbeing. And to retain its top talent.”
2. Additional insights and resources
Each cancer type has its own specific characteristics. And while some people want their doctor to be business-like, others prefer a doctor with a more empathetic approach. Finding the best fit – both for an employee as a person as well as for their specific cancer type – has never been more important.
A PMI provider will have a list of cancer specialists available for an employee to choose from. A cancer support service can take that further.
We’ll support the employee to choose the most appropriate doctor for them from the insurer’s list. And for the employee that wants to supplement what’s available using another source of funds, we can suggest additional experts in their specific type of cancer. As well as help them access other valuable services and resources.
“An employer can demonstrate its commitment to supporting an entire workforce from as little as single digit pounds per year, per person.”
3. Support beyond treatment
34% of the new cancer cases in the UK each year are of working age. And more of these people are surviving cancer than ever before. Many of them choose to work during or after treatment. Because (financial considerations aside) the work itself and connecting with colleagues can bring huge benefits.
That’s why our cancer support service doesn’t stop once treatment for cancer stops. It can support employees (including those caring for someone with cancer), line managers and HR through both treatment and recovery. It can help those employees diagnosed with cancer to remain in or return to work. (Please note: If you’re an employer and would like to talk about an employee we’re supporting, we’d need their written consent to discuss their case with you first. We take confidentiality very seriously and won’t be able to share any details with you otherwise).
“The employee can outsource his or her growing to do list to a trusted source and concentrate on getting better”
4. A holistic approach
For those enjoying private medical cover, our holistic approach complements the insurer’s service. Somebody with cancer needs clinical support, emotional support and practical support. By giving the emotional and practical dimensions the same weight as the physical condition, our service fills the gaps left by some insurers. All three needs are assessed independently. And a personalised programme of support developed.
A holistic approach – the clinical component
A 2016 study found that the original cancer diagnosis or treatment was verified in only 43-82% of cases. That means at least 18% of cancer patients could be left with the wrong diagnosis or treatment plan. Ultimately affecting prognosis. What’s more, in up to 69% of cases a second opinion led to a change in diagnosis, treatment recommendations or prognosis.
Our employee benefit proposition includes the funding of an expert second opinion and a pathology review. So peace of mind can be provided. Regardless of whether these are included as part of the employee’s PMI, or not.
A holistic approach – the emotional component
No two cases are the same. And everyone’s experience of cancer is different. That’s why we start with a needs-based assessment. It’s vital the employee’s emotional needs are met as part of the personalised support they’ll get. Some employees will be overwhelmed by the volume of information. Others will be angry, anxious, scared. Some may be unsure how to broach conversations with their family. Or their employer. Taking time to understand the individual and offering highly personalised emotional support creates the optimum environment for a positive outcome.
For example, we know from experience how difficult it can be to keep a clear head, to ask the right questions and to remember everything that’s said at medical appointments. That’s why we offer the optional extra of having a Cancer Nurse Specialist attend consultations alongside the employee.
This real-time support from a qualified cancer expert can help the employee prepare questions in advance of the consultation. The Cancer Nurse Specialist also takes notes in the consultation to ensure everything is captured, makes sure all the right questions have been asked and debriefs the patient after the meeting.
A holistic approach – the practical component
As well as medical uncertainty and the emotional upset, a cancer diagnosis brings practical challenges with it too. Maybe the employee needs help coordinating appointments, making travel arrangements or sourcing suitable accommodation near a clinic. Perhaps they need help sourcing childcare while they have treatment. Or finding a counsellor or nutritionist locally.
Our cancer support service complements PMI by providing a medical and general concierge service that supports and facilitates the funded care. This means the employee can outsource his or her expanding to do list to a trusted source and concentrate on getting better.
“The Cancer Nurse Specialist takes notes in the consultation to ensure everything is captured, makes sure all the right questions have been asked and debriefs the patient after the meeting.”