A short but sobering story:

A 51 year old female smokes 30 a day and has not yet ever had a mammogram. She found a breast lump and after needle biopsies, she went to her GP to hear the very bad news of her Grade 3 invasive ductal carcinoma. This was on a Wednesday and her GP wrote in his notes:

“Wants referral to Dr A the breast surgeon as Dr X does not have a public place [i.e. hospital bed and surgery appointment gap] for her breast surgery till 3 weeks; otherwise [he says] can be done in private [by Dr A] this Monday”

The next note was obviously made after a call from the patient: “patient cannot afford private, wants public”.

What must this patient have had to go through emotionally: to feel the real urgency for surgery, to understand the real danger of waiting with such an aggressive tumour, to make the calls about private treatment, only to find out it’s beyond her financial reach, to make the crushing decision that public surgery is the only option?

So many people think money will just magically come out of thin air when things go wrong. Or that doctors will look after you no matter whether you have the means to pay or not. Reality is so maddeningly different from perception.

Risky Business


If you are a new business owner or considering starting a business, risk protection should be part of your business plan.  It’s as essential as figuring out your cash flow for 12 months and paying your taxes. It is crucial to minimize any risk in your business life.  If you were to drive a motorbike, you would wear a helmet, if you are driving your car you wear a safety belt.  When you are in business for yourself, make sure you  have insurance, so the wheels of your business keep turning, if you have something occur that is out of your control.  Many small business owners do not stop to think about the uncontrollable variables that may interfere with their business.  The results can be like having a biking accident without wearing a helmet.

Here, are just a few types of insurance you might want to consider:

1. Business Loan Protection -To assist with the repayment of business debt
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Reading Round Up

ACC articles of Interest:

Fears on ACC work injury cover… Click Here

ACC to face private competition… Click Here

ACC levies may climb again… Click Here

My Picks for this Month:

New Zealand retirees ‘better off than elsewhere’
New Zealanders have been scared into saving for their retirement, says Finance Minister Bill English, but retirees here will be better off than their counterparts in Europe, Britain and the United States.

Cutting the property investment risk
Maybe the reason people think you are against property investment is that you accentuate the risks rather than the rules. Here are some I can think of:

Learning to love the high dollar
On the flip-side of the coin, a high exchange rate reduces the New Zealand dollar cost of the imported materials used to produce our exports.
Being in cool countries club not so bad.
The New Zealand dollar has risen rapidly since December last year. At the time of writing it was valued at just over US81c, which is up around 7.5 per cent from the middle of December.

Bank blows bubble
Back in 2003, the Reserve Bank missed the biggest shift in the underlying economy in recent history. House prices took off and fuelled a debt-funded spending spree that undermined our export sector and loaded more than $100 billion on to our national debt.

Petrol prices approach record high

Petrol prices are within touching distance of an all-time high following a 3 cent a litre increase.
The price of a litre of regular petrol at stations in most main centres is now $2.199, with diesel increasing 2c to $1.569 a litre.

Reading Round Up

Hang on… How much a week? – $162?

$162 a week is what you get if are on the sickness benefit.
How much of your weekly bill would the sickness benefit cover?  Seriously, I am struggling to comprehend how that would even cover the power and rates bills. Let alone, phone, food, gas and the mortgage.

The average Kiwi could survive 21 days if they suddenly found themselves without an income.  How long could you survive?  The last thing anyone wants to do while they are fighting for their lives, or are seriously ill or recovering, is worrying about paying the power bill and how to provide for the kids.

The government does what it can, but ask yourself would this be enough? Take a look at the current sickness benefit rates below. If you think that this would not be enough, please contact us for a review and see how we can help put something in place.

We all know someone who has struggled with Cancer and the havoc it plays in their lives.  It is not just the illness people are often fighting, if they do not have insurance, they are often fighting to keep a roof over their head.  Even if you are covered, talk to your kids ( if they are young adults) or close friends to make sure they have a plan.  With 1 in 3 kiwi’s being struck with cancer, it is something we all should be aware of.