Pressures on NHS Professionals: Money & Mental Health
Posted on 29th January 2021 at 13:17
The Covid-19 pandemic has ensured that the past 12 months has been the most challenging period of time for the NHS and most importantly, NHS employees.
NHS professionals are exposed to so much stress and anxiety – the sheer workload, the grief of losing patients, colleagues and loved ones. It is fair to state that many will be impacted by some form of mental health deterioration during their working life.
According to the Office for National Statistics, two of the four most common reasons for sickness absence are
mental health conditions (including stress, depression and anxiety)
musculoskeletal problems (including back pain and neck and upper limb problems)
Those two reasons for absence from work are not covered by life insurance or critical illness policies but they are covered by Income Protection Policies.
Accordingly, it now seems that Income Protection is the most desired employee-benefit.
Client Case Study of a Doctor:
In March 2018, Dr D was 35 years of age and he was the breadwinner in a young family unit.
As an NHS employee, he was aware of his employer’s generous sick pay scheme. He also knew, however, that it would only cover the initial 12 months of any absence from work.
Accordingly, he agreed to a review of the NHS sick pay arrangements.
Dr D’s salary was £53,000 per annum (rounded) and he was recommended to take out a bespoke Income Protection Policy that correlated with his NHS sick pay arrangement.
NHS Sick Pay Entitlement
As he had worked for the NHS for 9 years, he was entitled, therefore , to:
the maximum pay-out of 6 months of full pay,
followed by 6 months of half-pay,
and thereafter, nothing!
A Bespoke Discounted Income Protection Policy
As a result, Dr D bought an Income Protection policy that dovetailed with the NHS sick pay scheme. It meant that, if he was off work for long term sickness or disability, he would receive:
6 months’ full pay initially, then
6 months’ half pay plus 50% of his Income Protection monthly benefit. then
After 12 months of being unable to work, his NHS sick pay would cease and he would then receive the full Income Protection benefit - 60% of his annual pre-tax NHS income
That 60% of his annual pre-tax NHS income translates to £2,650 tax-free per month, until he returned to work or reached retirement age of 65 years.
Dr D’s bespoke NHS policy cost under £40 per month.
In late 2019, Dr D became ill with severe depression. Sadly, the long demanding hours and the chronic trauma had left him feeling overwhelmed, anxious and emotionally drained: he was unable to carry-on performing his role and he was ‘signed-off’ work.
The Income Protection Policy, however, meant that Dr D was able to continue to focus on his treatment and on his family, without having to worry about the family’s finances.
Dr D will continue to benefit from the monthly tax-free income protection payments of £2,650; the policy also gives him access to free support and rehabilitation services. The support ranges from topics that trigger stress or anxiety, such as finances, relationships and legal issues, but it also gives him access to dedicated mental health counsellors, if needed.
Had the Income Protection Policy not been in place, Dr D and his family would have experienced financial difficulties that, in turn, would have exacerbated his mental health condition and prolonged his recovery.
Mental health awareness is growing all of the time and luckily for this family, such issues were identified and supported from day-one.
Income Protector is here to provide support to our NHS professionals.
An Income Protection Policy should be everyone’s safety net against loss of income as a result of mental health issues, musculoskeletal problems and other physical conditions. Just as associated fees often mean that the most attractive mortgage rates prove more expensive than higher interest rates, a cheap income Protection premium isn’t always the most appropriate for applicants: additional add-on benefits are often worth the extra cost. Advice is required from a specialist and it is worth noting that all insurers’ premiums are discounted by Income Protector.
A mental health condition or a musculoskeletal problem can occur at any time in our lifetimes - Income Protector is here to provide support to our NHS professionals.
For more information on Income Protection for NHS Professionals, please contact
Nigel Osgood, Independent Mortgage Broker & Insurance Adviser
T: 01628 594433
INCOME PROTECTION INSURANCE
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