Why would an insurance company want your blood? Sounds a bit odd, right? But before purchasing life insurance, a company may require a medical screening that could include a questionnaire, height and weight check, and quite possibly, yes, even a blood sample.
Once you’ve decided you need life insurance and when to get it, you’ll need to decide what life insurance policy is right for you and how much you need. There are lots of decisions to make around life insurance, but before binding a policy, you’ll likely undergo a health screening. Here’s what you need to know about the life insurance medical exam.
Why is a medical exam needed, and what does a life insurance medical exam look for?
Insurance companies will not be in business long if they cannot accurately estimate the likelihood of you filing a claim. The medical exam is a standard practice used to help give the insurance company insight into your wellness, health history and risk factors. This, along with other factors, helps to determine your premium rate for your life insurance policy.
For smaller life insurance policy amounts (likely below $99,999) for younger clients, a medical exam may not be required; although, the insurance company can still request one. Your agent can walk you through your life insurance needs and answer any questions you may have about the medical exam.
How to schedule a medical screening for life insurance?
Typically, your insurance agent handles contacting the medical professional who will then reach out to you about setting up a time to administer the exam. This is no charge to you as the client; the insurance company pays this expense.
What to Expect at the Life Insurance Health Exam
The medical exam is usually administered by a professional medical worker, like a nurse. It is typically a basic physical and is often given in the comfort of your own home or office, although you may be able to take the exam at a medical facility. You shouldn’t worry that it will take up your whole day, they are usually only 15-45 minutes long. It may consist of an interview and a physical exam.
1. A Health Screening Interview
Expect to answer a few questions regarding your family’s health history, your habits and more. Be prepared to list the types of medications you may be on and the contact information of your primary care doctor and other physicians.
2. A Physical Exam
The medical professional will likely record your height, weight, blood pressure and pulse. You may also be asked to provide a urine sample and blood sample. In some instances, an EKG (electrocardiogram) may also be performed.
How to Prepare for the Life Insurance Health Screening
While you can’t “cheat” a health exam, there are a few things you can do to ensure you get the most accurate results.
- Get a good night’s rest the night before
- Drink plenty of water the day of the test; this will help if you need to provide a urine and blood sample
- Have your photo ID, a list of your medications and anything else your test provider says you need
Can you retake a life insurance medical exam?
Retaking a life insurance medical exam is not the norm; however, in rare instances, results may come back with discrepancies from a typical medical record. If it looks like something is “off,” you may be able to retake the screening for more accurate results.
Because the test is taken only once, it’s wise to get life insurance sooner rather than later. Your rate is likely to be lower when you’re younger as health issues are more likely to occur as you age.
Will I be given my Life Insurance Medical Exam results?
The results of your medical exam aren’t immediately available to you; however, you do have a right to access them. You can request the results to be sent to your primary care doctor, and he or she can share them with you.
If you have any questions about your life insurance premium, rate or policy, your agent can help guide you. Life insurance is an important piece to ensuring your loved ones are taken care of in the unlikely event that the worst happens.