The insurer said it saw a 20% hike in applications for critical illness policies during the first nine months of 2016, with over 30,000 new policies sold during the period.
Zurich said it has been focusing on improving coverage for conditions that generate the most claims and has been adding to the number of illnesses covered. This now includes all invasive cancers and most early stage cancers.
The most common reasons for claims in 2016 to date have been cancer, heart attack, stroke and multiple sclerosis.
During the first half of the year, over £30.6m was paid out to 380 customers with critical illness cover with the average pay out being £83,336 and the highest amounting to £550,000.
Richard Sadler, head of retail protection propositions, said: “It is very encouraging to see applications up on last year by such a large margin with more people taking steps to protect themselves and their families.
“We have focused on delivering material improvements in our critical illness product over the past few years, offering what we feel is the most comprehensive cover available, at an affordable price. We hope that this and our solid claims record means more and more customers are seeing the benefits of having such cover in place.
“We have also invested in supporting customers so that the whole process of claiming is as smooth and efficient as possible.”