Since the effectiveness of AIDS-related medications and antiretroviral therapies continues to improve, people with HIV can look forward to long and satisfying lives. In fact, HIV is now regarded by many physicians to be a chronic condition that can be successfully managed in perpetuity. As a result, some insurance companies have begun to offer life insurance options for those with HIV.
Finding an HIV Life Insurance Policy
The life insurance landscape for HIV-related polices is very dynamic and constantly improving. However, you should expect to encounter distinct coverage and benefit differences when compared to traditional policies.
If you already have a life insurance policy that was purchased prior to an HIV diagnosis, it is very important to make sure the premiums are paid on time. If the policy does lapse, it will be nearly impossible to find a similar level of coverage for the same premium.
There are several types of coverage available for those with HIV including:
- High-Risk Life Insurance: Companies that provide high-risk life insurance specialize in covering those with serious health issues including HIV.
- Group Employment Life Insurance: Many employers offer group life insurance policy options. You can take advantage of lower premiums and higher benefits as part of the group, and as an employee of the company, your acceptance is guaranteed.
- Guaranteed Life Insurance: This insurance product is available to everyone no matter how serious their current health issues may be. In fact, no medical history is required to obtain coverage. However, premiums are usually very high and benefits are limited, usually no more than $30,000 in most cases.
Coverage Limitations and Cost
For many insurance companies, HIV is still categorized as a serious health risk. Policy holders should expect to pay up to five times the amount a healthy individual would pay for the same coverage. Insurers provide the most favorable terms to those who meet the following criteria:
- Consistent antiretroviral treatment for at least three years
- Undetectable viral load
- No intravenous drug use
- No past hepatitis C infections
Since HIV-related life insurance policy choices are changing frequently, it is important to explore all available coverage options before selecting a policy.