You have spent years studying medicine and thousands of dollars to help children with their physical and mental well-being. But have you taken the time to assess your own financial wellness? As learned throughout the annual Financial Wellness Series, sponsored by the American Academy of Pediatrics Insurance Program, we all make decisions daily that directly impact our finances in either the short or long term—often without thinking twice about the rationale behind the choices we make.
And while understanding all of the various aspects of having a healthy wallet is key for Pediatricians starting out in their careers, having the proper insurance coverage in place to protect them, their families and their practices is often overlooked. Here are a few examples of important basic coverages:
Life insurance is one of the most basic, fundamental components of any financial plan. Think you don’t need it? If something were to happen to you, who would you leave behind without your income or financial contribution? What debt would you leave behind? If you have a family and/or debt (student loans, car loans, etc.), you need life coverage. Life insurance provides financial support through a pre-determined amount to your loved ones should something happen to you. This money can be used to pay for your final expenses, outstanding debt, or to help you family adjust to no longer having your household financial contribution.
We know what you are thinking. Why would you—someone just starting out in their career—need to worry about a disability? According to the Social Security Administration, 25% of 20-year-olds today will become disabled before reaching the age of 67.1 Do you still believe it couldn’t happen to you? Even with the high risk of developing a potentially life altering disability, only 20% of people own disability insurance.2
Disability insurance helps to protect the insured’s income should they develop a disability, either an injury or illness, that prevents them from working for a period of time. The money that is disbursed on a monthly basis from this policy can go toward paying bills and/or daily living expenses that may be difficult to manage without a steady income for the duration of the insured’s disability.
Student Loan Refinancing
For many starting out in medicine after years of schooling, student debt can seem insurmountable. Student Loan Refinancing is one way to save money on your loans. Juggling multiple student loans can be burdensome and time consuming, not to mention the high cost associated with federal and private student loans these days. Student loan refinancing allows you to combine all of your student loans into one monthly payment.
To reiterate, financial wellness is not just about your annual income or how much money you have saved—it is about consistency across all aspects of your financial portfolio. Having financial consistency in the following areas is a key indicator as to your overall financial wellness: 1) Living within your means; 2) Sticking to your spending plan; 3) Meeting your savings goals; and 4) Paying your bills on time. Keeping the balance of these components is the real challenge, which underscores the importance of having the right insurance to protect what matters the most to you.
The 2018 Financial Wellness Series, is coming to a close but the educational resources available to AAP members are accessible year round, as is access to the insurance member benefits. As you are just starting out in your career, when it comes to your insurance needs, the AAP Insurance Program has you covered. This program, available exclusively to AAP members, offers discounts and savings on a variety of important coverages, including: life, disability, accidental death & dismemberment, dental, vision insurance and student loan refinancing. ‘Insuring’ your start to a great career and check out what the AAP Insurance Program has to offer members today online or call today at (800)257-3220.
1 U.S. Social Security Administration, Fact Sheet, June 2016
2 2017 Insurance Barometer Study, Life Happens and LIMRA
3 Department of Health and Human Services, National Clearinghouse for Long-Term Care Information, www.longtermcare.gov.