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Life Insurance with Anaemia & Blood Disorders

October 4 2019 5 min read Life Insurance Uncategorized

life insurance with anaemia or vitamin b12 deficiency

What are blood cell disorders?

Blood cell disorders impair the formation and function of either red blood cells, white blood cells or platelets.

Red blood cells transport oxygen to organs and tissues.

White blood cells fight infections.

Platelets help the blood to clot.

Why do life insurance companies care if you have a blood disorder?

A life insurance underwriter is paid to assess your overall health and lifestyle when you apply for life insurance. There’s no easy way to say this – they are trying to figure out your chances of dying prematurely. 😱

While most blood disorders are not life-threatening, they could cause complications or be symptomatic of a more serious underlying illness. This is what an insurance company is trying to determine before they decide whether to offer you cover and calculate the premium you must pay.

OK, let’s look at the two most common blood disorders our clients need advice on

  1. Anaemia
  2. Vit B12 Deficiency

Life insurance with Anaemia

Anaemia

What is it?

Haemoglobin is a protein found within red blood cells that is used to transport oxygen in the blood. Anaemia is a lack of haemoglobin or a reduced amount of red blood cells in the bloodstream.
There are several types of anaemia. The most common form is iron deficiency anaemia. This mainly affects women. Common causes include menstruation, pregnancy and diet.

What questions will the insurer ask?

  • Underlying cause
  • Date of diagnosis and date treatment commenced
  • Details of treatment
  • Result of most recent blood test
  • Details of any symptoms and/or complications
  • Time off work

We’ve built a handy questionnaire for that – life insurance with anaemia questionnaire. Complete it and I’ll be back with the best insurer for you.

From your answers, the insurer will be able to ascertain whether your anaemia is

  • mild: normal blood tests, no complications
  • moderate: some abnormalities in the blood test, mild symptoms/some complications
  • or severe: severe abnormalities in the blood test, severe symptoms/complications, outstanding investigations

How will anaemia affect my mortgage protection or life insurance application?

If mild, you’ll get the normal price. If you’re bordering on medium/severe, you’ll get cover with a premium increase. However, if you’re in the severe category, the insurer is likely to postpone offering cover until your blood tests have normalised.

How will anaemia affect serious illness cover or income protection?

Again, mild anaemia won’t affect serious illness cover or income protection. You’ll get cover at an increased price for moderate and the insurer will postpone you if it’s severe.

Some insurers are more sympathetic when it comes to anaemia than others. So one insurer may class you as mild and give you the normal price while another sees you as a more moderate case and will increase your premium.

Make sure you apply to the correct insurer first time around – use a broker who knows his stuff *ahem

Right, let’s look at getting cover with Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Life insurance with Vitamin B12 Deficiency (Pernicious Anaemia)

Vitamin B12 Deficiency

What is it?

Vitamin B12 is used in the formation of red blood cells and myelin (a substance that protects the cells of the nervous system). Vitamin B12 deficiency may be due to diet or an underlying disease.

What questions will the insurer ask?

  • Underlying cause
  • Date of diagnosis and date treatment commenced
  • Details of treatment
  • Result of most recent blood test
  • Details of any symptoms and/or complications
  • Time off work

Again you can use our questionnaire for that – life insurance with vitamin B12 deficiency questionnaire.

If you complete it, I’ll run it by my panel of insurers and advise which one to apply to right off the bat.

From your answers, the insurer will be able to ascertain whether your deficiency is

  • mild: normal blood tests, no complications
  • moderate: some abnormalities in the blood test, mild symptoms/some complications
  • or severe: severe abnormalities in the blood test, severe symptoms/complications, outstanding investigations

How will vitamin b12 deficiency affect my mortgage protection or life insurance application?

If mild, you’ll get the normal price. If you’re bordering on medium/severe, you’ll get cover with a premium increase. However, if you’re in a severe category, the insurer is likely to postpone offering cover until your blood tests have normalised.

How will vitamin b12 deficiency affect serious illness cover or income protection?

Again, mild vitamin b12 deficiency won’t affect serious illness cover or income protection. You’ll get cover at an increased price for moderate and the insurer will postpone you if it’s severe.

As you can see the underwriters treat both conditions in a similar fashion.

But again…

What other blood disorders affect life insurance?

Haemochromatosis

Haemochromatosis is the most common one.

Haemochromatosis is an overload of iron in the blood that can lead to tissue and organ damage. You usually inherit it from a parent.

I wrote a blog on it a couple of years ago that has stood the test of time 🙂

How does haemochromatosis affect life insurance?

Blood Clot

We have also arranged cover for clients who have had a blood clot in the past

Here’s a case study on one on them

Low Blood Platelets

It’s not as common a blood disorder but we see it from time to time:

How to get life insurance with Thrombocytopenia

Polycythemia vera

Here the body produces too many blood cells, from an unknown cause. The excess red blood cells usually create no problems but may cause blood clots in some people.

Cover is possible assuming it’s been 12 months since diagnosis and your haemocrit levels are good.

What blood disorders are most difficult when it comes to life insurance?

Haemophilia

Haemophilia is a general term used to describe a group of inherited disorders in which there is a life long defect in the blood’s clotting mechanism.

Similar to anaemia, the insurers class it as mild (15-35% of clotting factor present), medium ( 6%-15% of clotting factor present) or severe (1% of clotting factor present).

Your chances of cover depend on the severity and your age. If you have severe haemophilia, you won’t get mortgage protection or life insurance, unfortunately.

Aplastic anaemia

Here the bone marrow doesn’t produce enough blood cells, including red blood cells. In this case, it’s the underlying conditions that’s the worry, it could be hepatitis,  Epstein-Barr, or HIV.

Or it could be the side effect of a drug,  chemotherapy medications or pregnancy.

Medications, blood transfusions, and even a bone marrow transplant may be required to treat aplastic anaemia.

Because of all the variables involved, it’s impossible to guide you on your chances of cover without seeing a full medical report.

To be able to quote, the underwriters would need evidence that:

  • condition stable for 2yrs
  • no significant bleeding or infection complication
  • blood tests are within acceptable ranges (specifically, haematocrit, neutrophils, platelets)

Over to you…

I hope that answers the question you were googling, if you’ve gotten this far, I’m pretty sure it did.

Why not take the next step and complete our short blood disorders questionnaire. If you do, I’ll be back in a jiffy to tell you whether cover is possible and at what price. Otherwise the “what ifs” will continue to wreck your head. We’re the experts in Ireland at high-risk life insurance so don’t worry, you’re in safe hands. Ask these lovely people

It goes without saying…but I’ll say it anyway!

Anything you disclose is between you and me, in my discussions with the insurers, I will anonymise your details.

If you’d prefer to discuss it over the phone first, feel free to schedule a call at a time that suits.

Chat soon.

Life Insurance Uncategorized
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