Sunday, 26 February 2012

Will Insurance Companies Start Demanding Your DNA?

As bio technology and science advance, the likelihood of insurance companies starting to use DNA to form policies and quote premiums is high. Of course there will be privacy concerns and public debates, but in the end, this could become a reality.

Currently insurance companies use questionnaires and medical records to determine insurance eligibility. If genetic information could be used it could provide a more accurate quote and outlook into your future.

Knowing your DNA will allow you to gain additional insight and start taking measures to counteract potential health related threats. Let’s say you’re 27 years young and super healthy and run five hours a week, but your family has a history of a rare heart disease that you were previously unaware of. This rare disease was noticed from your DNA and resulted in a high premium. Initially you feel angry and upset that you’re paying more and have a known probability of suffering a rare disease. However, the higher premium will result in a higher level of care, should you suffer this fate. Because of your young age, you can also take preventative measures to lower the probability of suffering this disease. It’s a win-win situation for both you and the insurance company.

Since insurance companies know these preventative measures lower probabilities, they may even subsidize activities such as swimming and gym memberships. The money they’ll fork out for gym memberships will return ten-fold in potential medical expenses.

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