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2 August 2022
Each year around 25,000 New Zealanders are diagnosed with cancer. For many, this means an emotional and complex road ahead, navigating the healthcare system, understanding treatment plans, learning medical terminologies - all while battling the physical, mental, and emotional toll of the disease.
That’s why the country’s largest locally owned life insurer Fidelity Life has entered an exclusive agreement with leading global digital oncology and telehealth experts, CancerAid and Teladoc Health, to bring their evidence-based cancer support programme to New Zealand.
Launching in October 2022, Cancer companion will initially be available to Fidelity Life Trauma cover customers* who have lodged a cancer claim, regardless of whether their claim has been approved.
Fidelity Life Chief Customer Officer Peter Doherty says he’s pleased to be bringing a holistic programme to help customers through a period of stress and uncertainty.
“Our purpose at Fidelity Life is to give New Zealanders certainty to enjoy a more rewarding life, no matter what life throws at them. A cancer diagnosis is often one of those curveballs. It can be a devastating and life-changing moment but with Cancer companion, we can connect our customers to resources and specialised support so they feel empowered and can focus on what’s important - getting well.”
Cancer companion has been designed to complement customers’ cancer treatment. Newly enrolled customers will be offered guidance on recommended support options, but all elements of the programme are optional and can be tailored to suit the needs of the individual.
Cancer companion will consist of three main components:
- Cancer Coach: One-on-one virtual support programme from a qualified CancerAid coach, who’s there to listen, help track and manage symptoms, and provide evidence-based techniques to improve lifestyle factors such as sleep, diet, and exercise, unique to each person and their condition.
- Second Medical Opinion: Access to Teladoc Health’s world-leading oncologists for a specialised expert opinion, including retesting of any pathology, and providing confidence and clarity on treatment pathways to support the treating physicians or doctors in helping guide customers on their healthcare journey.
- Mental Health Support: Fast, confidential, virtual at-home access to therapy through Teladoc Health’s network of New Zealand-registered mental health professionals, with the first session within 10 days of the first referral.
“CancerAid and Teladoc Health are experts in the field, and we’re thrilled to be the first to bring their combined service to New Zealanders. People who’ve completed Cancer Coach in Australia recorded a marked improvement in pain, emotional issues, and fatigue, and were 73% more likely to return to work, on average, four months faster. Similarly, Teladoc Health’s global Second Medical Opinion service has resulted in 27% of treatments and 10% of diagnoses being modified on cancer specific conditions.
“Doctors are great at treating the disease, but these outcomes show how additional wrap-around services can have a tangible impact on the quality of life and recovery of a patient. Being able to provide this kind of care and service means we can help our customers and make a contribution towards better long term health outcomes for New Zealanders with cancer,” concludes Peter.
Full details of Cancer companion will be available when it launches in October 2022.
*T&Cs apply. Not available on Group Trauma covers, Fidelity Insurance (previously Westpac Life) Trauma covers, any other cover types (e.g., Life cover, Income protection, Key person cover etc.)
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