Critical illness insurance and disability insurance are fundamentally different products, but both share the same goal of helping to provide financial relief for employees when a medical condition strikes. And while they work in different ways, they can also work together to provide more assistance to employees when they need it most.

Disability insurance directly replaces a portion of an employee’s income when they’re unable to work because of an accident or illness. Because it doesn’t pay all of an employee’s income (and for part-time employees, it pays even less), employees may still face funding gaps, especially when out-of-pockets costs resulting from their medical condition start adding up.

Critical illness, on the other hand, pays a lump-sum benefit after a qualifying condition that can be used for any purpose—from copays and lab fees to childcare and transportation. That’s why critical illness can serve as a valuable partner to disability insurance. It can provide supplemental funding that covers many of the costs employees may face when they’re out of work for a covered medical condition.


Advantages of combining critical illness and disability insurance

Working in tandem

Consider what the most common reason for short-term disability leave is: pregnancy. The employee receives a portion of her income while on leave, usually for six to eight weeks. Unfortunately, complications with pregnancy and childbirth are also common, and they come with additional costs that may not be covered by the employee’s major medical plan—and they often happen while the employee is on leave and already receiving less than her usual salary.

Critical illness benefits can help employees pay for these unexpected costs. For example, a pregnant employee is diagnosed with preeclampsia, a condition that often results in bed rest. In addition to the increased costs of copays and other fees, the employee may also need to start her disability leave earlier than expected.

With a Symetra critical illness policy, the employee could receive a lump-sum benefit upon the preeclampsia diagnosis that she could use for anything—from copays to transportation to childcare—while she’s on bed rest. The policy can also pay benefits for complications during and after childbirth.

Lessening the impact

Pregnancy and childbirth are just two examples of conditions that can be covered by our critical illness insurance. When combined with Symetra’s short-term disability coverage, employees can emerge from these medical situations with less financial impact, allowing them to focus on what matters most—recovery and moving forward.

Learn more about how critical illness insurance can provide financial protection or talk to your Symetra representative.