ACE Research Shows Rising Interest in Critical Illness Cover as State Financial Support Comes under Strain in Europe

LONDON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--ACE Group today released research that demonstrates growing concern over the potential impact of reduced state financial support should illness strike. 71% of people surveyed by ACE are worried about the impact that cancer, a heart attack or stroke might have on their finances and 45% would consider buying cost-effective critical illness insurance to protect their income, standard of living and pay for additional treatment and support they may need to help them back to good health that may otherwise be out of their reach.

ACE’s report Changing consumer perceptions of personal financial protection, is based on research conducted with over 2,500 consumers in France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK at the end of 2014. The findings reveal that over two thirds of consumers are more concerned about their health than they used to be. The diseases and illnesses causing the greatest concern are cancer, heart attack and stroke. Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease are also cited.

When asked which financial protection products they would consider buying, critical illness insurance ranked second, after private medical insurance (PMI). Although demand is high, the research also found that understanding of critical illness insurance was patchy across Europe, with over half (53%) of those surveyed unaware, or claiming very limited knowledge of this type of cover. Fewer than half of respondents (43%) complain that health insurance products are “complex” and “generally difficult to understand”, while over two thirds (67%) say full PMI is “too expensive” and they would be interested in more cost-effective financial protection products.

Matt Foster, Head of Product Marketing, Accident & Health for ACE in Europe, Eurasia & Africa, said:

“A clear message emerges from this research. With state support under pressure, consumers across Europe want cost-effective protection that will plug the gaps in both public and private healthcare and provide extra financial support at a time when they may be unable to work, such as following the diagnosis of a serious illness.

“At ACE, we believe our flexible approach to underwriting and pricing critical illness insurance, combined with our claims reputation, puts us in a strong position to develop this segment further. We welcome dialogue with liked-minded brokers who want to take this opportunity.”

A full report based on the research, Changing consumer perceptions of personal financial protection, is available for interested brokers using the contact point below.


About ACE:

ACE Group is one of the world’s largest multiline property and casualty insurers. With operations in 54 countries, ACE provides commercial and personal property and casualty insurance, personal accident and supplemental health insurance, reinsurance and life insurance to a diverse group of clients. ACE Limited, the parent company of the ACE Group, is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: ACE) and is a component of the S&P 500 index.

Additional information can be found at:



ACE Group
Matt Foster
Head of Product Marketing
Europe, Eurasia and Africa, Accident & Health
T: +44 207 173 7786
M: +44 7833 255807