Doctors are among the highest wage earners in the United States and have an average income which is 4 times the national average. You know very well that the other side of this happy story is that you have had to spend a huge amount to attend medical school and you managed that with a huge student loan. You may or may not know that it usually takes a long time for a doctor to repay such debt, often going beyond a decade. Even with a much higher income, it could take you at least a decade and a half to repay the loan unless you really hit the big time.
Most doctors don’t and therein come the question – what happens if you get disabled for a few years and are not able to work and earn an income? You may or may not have an individual disability insurance (IDI) policy but you most likely have a group policy. The big question is whether this is enough or adequate to meet your requirements? You can do your research and get the opinion of folks, who know better, but you must consider a few important questions.
The average disability duration in America is 31 months
A lot of folks outside the medical fraternity underplay the risks of disability because they are not clued up with the facts. As per claim stats, the average duration of long term disability is 31 months which is over 2½ years. When you have bills to pay, most importantly, your student loan, can you afford to be out of work with no income for that long? No way; you need to cover this risk with an individual doctors disability insurance.
Even if you have been working for 15-20 years and have built up enough financial cushion to get over such a crisis, it will make little sense to dig into your savings to pay your bills for 2-3 years or more. Some disability durations apparently stretch much longer than this average duration. Even if you are a young dentist with good financial stability, you will need an individual dentists disability insurance to deal with this kind of situation.
One in four American millennial will suffer disability at some point
Another misperception about disability that a lot of people have is that they don’t live dangerously or drive recklessly and so they are unlikely to meet with an accident and get disabled. Well, accidental injuries account for just 10% of disabilities; the balance 90% of disabilities are caused by illnesses. It’s not a smart idea to overlook disability insurance services.
Now, people outside the medical fraternity having such opinions can be excused once but doctors; that too, those below 30 years should know better. This is a matter of great importance that young doctors especially, should consider with all seriousness. You need a healthcare professionals disability insurance to cover this risk.
Hire a reliable insurance broker-advisor
Insurance is a complex subject to handle for someone who is not an industry professional. It’s not just about the terms and conditions of your policy but a lot more that you need to know in order to select the right healthcare professionals insurance policy.
Even that won’t be enough to get you adequate cover; you will need to optimize your policy. It’s much better to hire the services of a reliable and capable disability insurance broker to guide you in this matter.