Working in the nursing industry comes with unique risks. Find out how life insurance works for healthcare workers and how it could help protect you and your family.

Key Points

  • Life insurance for nurses offers protection from some of the unique risks of working in your industry.

  • If you become ill or are injured at work, life insurance can take the financial strain off you and your family.

  • There are different types of life insurance available to suit nurses’ different needs and life stages.

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A lot of nurses take out life cover to protect themselves against some of the risks of working in your industry.

In this guide, we'll cover why nurses might want to consider life insurance, the different types of cover available and what to consider when choosing a policy.

What kinds of risks do nurses face?

Working as a nurse comes with a few unique considerations. 

According to the Australian Safety and Compensation Council*, some of the biggest risks nurses in Australia face, include:

  • Workplace stress.

  • Needlestick injuries.

  • Injuries from lifting or moving heavy objects.

  • Exposure to bloodborne pathogens.

Although safe work practices can help reduce these risks, they’re definitely factors to keep in mind when planning your future.

In worst-case scenarios these risks could stop you from being able to earn your living temporarily, or even permanently. That’s how life cover makes a difference.

Should nurses get life insurance?

A good way for nurses to answer this question is to think about what would happen if you were injured on the job, or your health took a turn for the worse, and you had to stop working.

How long could you support yourself and your family if you couldn’t earn your regular income? Who would help out with any unpaid work you normally do around the house, such as taking care of your kids?

Life insurance takes away the financial strain, so your bills are covered if you can’t work temporarily or permanently. 

It can also help with the cost of a cleaner, nanny, or other things you might need to make life easier while you’re recovering from illness or injury. 

While it’s something most of us don’t like to think about, life insurance also includes financial protection for your family if you were to pass away.

What types of life insurance is best for nurses?

First, let’s break down the four main types of life insurance in Australia: 

  1. Term life insurance: Also known as 'life cover' or 'death cover', is probably what most people think of in relation to life insurance. It pays a beneficiary, such as your partner, a lump sum if you pass away or are diagnosed with a terminal illness.

  2. Trauma insurance: Also known as 'critical illness cover', this type of cover pays you a lump sum in the event of a particular illness or injury, such as cancer or a heart attack.

  3. Total and permanent disability (TPD) insurance: TPD pays you a lump sum if you can't work again due to permanent illness, injury or disability. 

Income protection insurance:This type of cover pays up to 70% of your usual income, usually monthly, if you can't work for a prolonged period of time, due to illness or injury.

So which life insurance is best for you? 

This depends on your specific situation. 

Income protection insurance, trauma insurance and TPD insurance all provide a financial safety net if you can’t work, so they're beneficial for both you and any loved ones you’re supporting financially. 

Term life insurance provides a financial lifeline for your loved ones, should you pass away.

Deciding what’s right for you can be tricky. Compare Club’s life insurance specialists can help find cover that suits your specific situation, budget and offers great value for money.

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Should nurses get income protection cover?

There’s no definitive answer here, because it depends on your personal circumstances, but the benefits to having income protection insurance include the peace of mind that comes with knowing your expenses are taken care of, no matter what, even when you work in a high-risk industry like nursing.

What should nurses consider when taking out life insurance?

There are a couple of specific policy features to consider if you’re a nurse taking out life insurance:

  • Needlestick and bloodborne disease cover: This pays you a lump sum if you’re accidentally infected by a specified bloodborne disease like HIV, Hepatitis B or Hepatitis C. In some cases this can be added to income protection, trauma and TPD policies.

  • ‘Own Occupation’ cover: Own Occupation relates to TPD cover and pays out if you can no longer work in nursing specifically (as opposed to any other occupation). It's worth checking whether your policy is Own Occupation, because if it’s not it can reduce the likelihood of a payout, should you need to make a claim. 

Making sense of the ins and outs of life insurance policies isn’t always easy or straightforward. 

It’s why we built a handy comparison tool, which lets you compare cover and prices from a panel of insurers, along with tailored support from our life insurance specialists.

Click the button below to get started today.

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This guide is opinion only and should not be taken as medical or financial advice. Check with a financial professional before making any decisions.

*Australia Safety and Compensation Council, OHS risk factors for rural and metropolitan nurses: Comparative results from a national hazard surveillance pilot survey, accessed 21 March 2022.