Dear Saxena ji,
Thank you for inquiry.
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PROVIDING yourself with an insurance cover may not be all that easy
in the near future. Insurance companies
are now looking at the prospect of
genetic testing to weed out high risk
people or else insisting on their
payment of higher premiums. This will
then allow insurance companies to
compensate for 'adverse selection' -
the selection of such clients who have
grounds to believe they will become ill
or die young.
Genetic testing recently revealed how six per cent of breast cancer cases
have been-due'to the presence of two
specific genes (Down To Earth, Vol 4,
No 17). The detection of such genes
could thus make a person a bad risk for
the insurance companies who would
want to deny providing insurance cover.
In the US, insurance companies are
already advising people wanting to
insure their lives for large sums to first
undergo genetic testing. Predictions are
that such a trend could also spread
to the UK in a period of five years. As
genetic testing, which is now in its
infancy, takes off, it could bring about
a radical change on how insurance
policies are made.