Aviva has partnered with the Macmillan cancer charity to provide additional emotional, clinical and financial support to its individual and group protection customers.
Macmillan estimates there are tens of thousands of people ‘missing’ a cancer diagnosis in the UK due to disruption caused by the pandemic and ongoing pressure on NHS services.
It warns that it could, at best, take the NHS well into 2022 to identify those individuals whose cancer has not yet been diagnosed because of the disruption caused by Covid-19. As a result, Aviva expects to see protection claims presenting with more advanced cancers throughout 2021 and into 2022.
Recognising that customers experiencing a cancer diagnosis are likely to face even greater challenges than ever before, Aviva says it is committed to its protection customers beyond their financial claim payment.
The new partnership agreement builds on Aviva’s work with Macmillan Clinical Nurse Specialists since 2017, which has provided a quicker claims process for some individual critical illness customers with cancer.
In 2020, the insurer was able to pay more than 300 claims for customers with cancer within a matter of days, by simply speaking to the customer’s Macmillan Clinical Nurse Specialist to verify their diagnosis.
Under the new agreement, Aviva and Macmillan Cancer Support will be working on a range of new initiatives throughout the year to help support all of Aviva’s protection customers with cancer diagnoses. This support will be available to up to 7 million Aviva protection customers, whether their policy was bought directly with Aviva or through a financial adviser or partner, or is through a workplace group protection scheme.
Aviva and Macmillan will work together to train more than 200 front-line Aviva protection claims employees to provide support to protection customers living with cancer, or who live with someone who has cancer.
Learning events will also be hosted by Aviva and Macmillan for financial advisers and corporate employer clients, to provide them with guidance on giving emotional support to customers who have been diagnosed with cancer and guidance on signposting them to available services through Macmillan.
Aviva managing director of individual protection, Paul Brencher, says:“At a time when Aviva’s protection customers experiencing cancer are likely to need additional support, it is right that we do everything that we can to help them get that support.
“Together, Aviva and Macmillan helped hundreds of customers and their families to quickly access financial support from their policies in 2020, despite the impact of the pandemic on cancer diagnosis and treatment, enabling them to focus on their health and wellbeing.”
Macmillan Cancer Support head of corporate partnerships Natasha Parker adds: “Our partnership with Aviva enables Macmillan to provide better support for people living with cancer, particularly those struggling with the financial impact that a cancer diagnosis can bring.
“By working together we are able to signpost Aviva customers to our clinical, financial and emotional support services whilst working closely with our clinical nurse specialists to help reduce the time it takes to process an individual critical illness insurance claim.
“This is crucial as more than one in three people with cancer (39 per cent) are severely financially impacted by their diagnosis. Partnerships like ours with Aviva are more important than ever before, especially at a time when people living with cancer may have more complex needs and significant financial pressures from living with cancer due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.”