Guardian recently announced a new critical illness rider that includes a hospital admission rider with a lump-sum cash benefit. The rider covers conditions not covered by the company's base critical illness plan. The rider covers cancer, heart attack, stroke, major organ transplant, end stage renal failure (kidney failure) and coronary artery bypass graft.


Employers can provide a benefit of anywhere between $1,000 and $50,000 for the first-ever diagnosis of a covered illness, and includes a recurrence feature to protect employees who develop a second illness. Members can use the benefit payments any way they choose.


"People who have comprehensive health and disability coverage are often surprised by out-of-pocket medical and unanticipated non-medical expenses," said Barry Petruzzi, second vice president, Group Benefits, Guardian. "It isn't surprising that critical illness insurance is prevalent in Europe and Canada where universal health care coverage is available because even when medical coverage is very low or free, there are significant costs associated with experiencing a serious illness. Group critical illness insurance was designed to provide an affordable solution."

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