GREAT Life Advantage

The impact of critical illness is greater than one can imagine

Critical Illness - know-all through the experience of critical survivors and their loved ones. Learn about the impact of prolonged treatment costs, recurrence of critical illness and the importance of adequate insurance coverage.

10 Jun 2022
The impact of critical illness is greater than one can imagine

There are many things in life we should never sideline until the last minute, and sitting near the very top of the list is Critical Illness.

Being inflicted by Critical Illnesses can affect a patient’s physical being, and result in mental and financial stress on the patient, including his family members and caregivers.

As the impact caused by Critical Illnesses can disrupt you and your family’s lives, we need to be better-informed so we can be better prepared when it strikes.

What are the Critical Illness conditions?

According to the Life Insurance Association (LIA), there are 37 medical conditions classified as Critical Illness. While some listed medical conditions (such as Blindness or Severe Dementia) may not seem life-threatening, they are life-changing to those afflicted.

37 Critical Illnesses according to LIA
Major Cancer Heart Attack of Specified Severity Stroke with Permanent Neurological Deficit
Coronary Artery By-pass Surgery End Stage Kidney Failure Irreversible Aplastic Anaemia
End Stage Lung Disease End Stage Liver Failure Coma
Deafness (Irreversible Loss of Hearing) Open Chest Heart Valve Surgery Irreversible Loss of Speech
Major Burns Major Organ / Bone Marrow Transplantation Multiple Sclerosis
Muscular Dystrophy Idiopathic Parkinson’s Disease Open Chest Surgery to Aorta
Alzheimer’s Disease / Severe Dementia Fulminant Hepatitis Motor Neurone Disease
Primary Pulmonary Hypertension HIV Due to Blood Transfusion and Occupationally Acquired HIV Benign Brain Tumour
Severe Encephalitis Severe Bacterial Meningitis Angioplasty & Other Invasive Treatment for Coronary Artery
Blindness (Irreversible Loss of Sight) Major Head Trauma Paralysis (Irreversible Loss of Use of Limbs)
Terminal Illness Progressive Scleroderma Persistent Vegetative State (Apallic Syndrome)
Systemic Lupus Erythematosus with Lupus Nephritis Other Serious Coronary Artery Disease Poliomyelitis
Loss of Independent Existence
Are we even prepared when Critical Illness strikes?

People don’t typically think that Critical Illness will happen to them especially if they’re young and far from retirement age. After all, what are the odds?

Here are the odds: for cancer alone, a single day in Singapore will see about 39 people being diagnosed with it and 15 people dying from it. In fact, 1 in 4 people may develop cancer in their lifetime.*

did you know

Let’s face it: experiencing Critical Illness and its impact at some point in our life – either as a patient or as a caregiver of your loved one – is more of a ‘when’ rather than an ‘if’.

The likelihood of being diagnosed with Critical Illnesses and their impact is often underestimated. Great Eastern offers some insights on the different perceptions between Critical Illness patients and their caregivers who have experienced Critical Illnesses, and those who have not experienced them.

Great Eastern’s “The Impact of Critical Illness in Singapore” survey

Great Eastern conducted a consumer survey in December 2020 with over 500 Singaporeans to understand their concerns and perspectives regarding Critical Illness. This survey covered two segments with an even split of Critical Illness patients and their caregivers (Experiencers) who had experienced Critical Illness in the last three years, and those who were never affected by Critical Illness (Non-Experiencers).


Financial concerns, such as long-term medical expenses and income loss, are Singaporeans’ biggest worries, with results showing that the cost of Critical Illness blindsided many. 55% of the Experiencers required at least S$100,000 during the recovery process; and at least 1 in 3 spent above S$250,000. Some often-overlooked pain points are also identified: nearly 40% have to stop working for more than a year, which means a loss of income.



Many Non-Experiencers


Many Non-Experiencers did not think about the possibilities of being hit by a second or third Critical Illness, beyond the first strike. In contrast, more than 50% of Experiencers believe in multiple occurrences of Critical Illness. 

The survey also highlighted the challenges faced by the Experiencers. 7 in 10 of the Experiencers already own at least one Critical Illness plan, and 36% of them tried to purchase additional insurance to safeguard their financial support and overall coverage after experiencing the hefty costs and impact of being ill first-hand. Unfortunately, 97% of them encountered difficulties in application, with the primary cause being their pre-existing medical conditions.

The impact of CI coverage


80% of the Experiencers surveyed regretted not being adequately insured, and 73% were willing to pay more for a multi-pay Critical Illness plan to account for any unexpected multiple occurrences of Critical Illness. After experiencing the inadequacy from a one-time Critical Illness coverage, Experiencers realise it is important to purchase adequate Critical Illness coverage upfront. 

Be covered over and over against Critical Illness

Take it from people who have been through the harsh reality of Critical Illness. To adequately protect yourself and your loved ones, you need a Critical Illness plan that provides enough financial support and does not expire after just one claim.

Consider GREAT Life Advantage - this whole life regular premium investment-linked plan provides coverage against Death, Total and Permanent Disability and Terminal Illness, you can also complement this plan with its Complete MultiPay Critical Illness Plus Advantage Rider for enhanced protection and financial support against 120 Critical Illness conditions across different stages – early, intermediate and critical, including subsequent cancer, subsequent heart attack and subsequent stroke. With this rider, you can make a Critical Illness claim for up to three times and receive 100% of the coverage amount for each claim. With a plan that provides multiple payouts for Critical Illness, you’ll have the assurance of continued Critical Illness coverage even after the first Critical Illness claim.

GREAT Life Advantage also offers the flexibility for you to adjust your coverage to meet your changing needs. You can adjust your coverage as you reach any of the eight life’s milestone events, like the third policy anniversary, the birth of a child or a child entering school – with no medical assessment required.

Start the fight against Critical Illness today.

You may find it difficult to approach the topic of Critical Illness with your financial representative, but it is an essential one to have for your insurance planning. 

GREAT Life Advantage

Be covered over and over against critical illness



Singapore Cancer Society -

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This advertisement has not been reviewed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore.

This policy is protected under the Policy Owners’ Protection Scheme which is administered by the Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation (SDIC). Coverage for your policy is automatic and no further action is required from you. For more information on the types of benefits that are covered under the scheme as well as the limits of coverage, where applicable, please contact us or visit the Life Insurance Association (LIA) or SDIC websites ( or

Investments in this plan are subject to investment risks including the possible loss of the principal amount invested. The value of the units in the Fund(s) and the income accruing to the units, if any, may fall or rise. Please refer to Fund Details and Product Highlights Sheet for the specific risks of the Fund(s). Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future performance.

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