You do need insurance to cover this risk. We think that critical illness policies would be a good choice here. The advantage of buying a critical illness insurance plan is that on diagnosis of a specified serious illness, the insurer pays you a promised lumpsum amount with no questions asked on how you’re planning to spend the money. Critical illness covers are usually offered from a very young age with the age of entry capped at 60 or 65. These policies, however, offer life-long renewability. While many insurers waive medical tests for younger folk, taking such a test can ensure a better claims experience at a later date.