Why genetic tests could affect your insurance coverage in the future

| | August 15, 2018
genetic testing
Image credit: Jim Young/Reuters
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Taking a genetic test in your 20s or 30s could, indeed, affect your ability to get long-term-care insurance later — or at least the price you’ll pay.

Q: Can getting a genetic test interfere with being able to buy long-term-care insurance in the future? If you do get a plan, can the insurer drop you after you find out the results of a genetic test?

In general, long-term-care insurers can indeed use genetic test results when they decide whether to offer you coverage. The federal Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act does prohibit insurers from asking for or using your genetic information to make decisions about whether to sell you health insurance or how much to charge you. But those privacy protections don’t apply to long-term-care policies, life insurance or disability insurance.

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Q: Can I switch Medigap insurance companies midway through the year? I found a less expensive policy.

It depends. Under federal law, when people turn 65 and first enroll in Medicare Part B they have a six-month window to sign up for a Medigap plan — a commercial policy that picks up some of the out-of-pocket costs for services that Medicare doesn’t cover. (Medicare Part A covers hospitalization, and Medicare Part B covers outpatient services.) During that six-month period, insurers have to accept enrollees, even if they have health problems.

Read full, original post: Genetic Tests Can Hurt Your Chances Of Getting Some Types Of Insurance

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