“Canada to see a 40% increase in cancer patients by 2013”

This Globe and Mail article goes on to report how this staggering statistic is due to the “rising tide of seniors”. In fact, way down the page, the article reveals the incident rates for cancer have held steady; death rates are down and survival rates are up.

The real story, it seems, is that the boomers, who still amass the largest segment of the population, are getting up there and as they age, researchers predict, they will be flood the system with their needs.

What we need to do: Invest…invest…invest…in long term planning and prevention.

  • Quit smoking
  • Lose weight
  • Stay out of the sun
  • Regular screening

Nothing new there. Common sense, really. Easier said than done.

At the heart of this is planning. As Canadians, we used to think it was only those in the United States who had to worry about the cost of health care in retirement. This was never really true; however, with so many facing a future where the social safety net is rather thin, chatter of this kind is big news.

The need for health care is never more prevalent than in the retirement years, yet this is a time when availability of ‘protection’ for these services is severely lacking. Sure, the basics are covered; generic drugs, hospital and routine doctor’s visits. But what about professional doctors like physiotherapy, chiropractic, and audiology? Vision care? Dental services?

How many retirement plans include covering these extra costs?

It’s one of those things where thinking ahead now can save a lot stress later. Be sure to include this line item in any long term financial plan.

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