Objectives To gather empirical evidence on any discrimination based on genetic information shown by the insurance industry in the United Kingdom and to assess how society is likely to handle future genetic information from tests for polygenic multifactorial conditions.
Design Postal questionnaire survey.
Subjects Sample (n=7000) of members from seven British support groups for families with genetic disorders and a representative sample (n=1033) of the general public who answered questions on applying for life insurance as part of an omnibus survey.
Main outcome measures Subjects were asked about their experiences with insurers, the medical profession, employers, and social services.
Experiences with insurers are reported here.
Results Altogether 33.4% of the study group had problems when applying for life insurance compared with 5% of applicants in the omnibus survey.
Thirteen per cent of study respondents from subgroups who represented no adverse actuarial risk on genetic grounds reported that their treatment by insurers seemed to represent unjustified genetic discrimination.
Conclusions Life insurers may not be operating a consistent policy for assessing genetic information or acting in accord with the actuarial risks brought to them.
The inconsistency suggests error rather than a corporate policy of discrimination based on genetic characteristics.
An y future proposals for genetic testing for common or multifactorial disorders should lie examined carefully.
Mots-clés Pascal : Royaume Uni, Europe, Homme, Assurance vie, Questionnaire, Etude transversale, Politique, Discrimination, Etude statistique, Génétique, Maladie héréditaire, Information
Mots-clés Pascal anglais : United Kingdom, Europe, Human, Life insurance, Questionnaire, Cross sectional study, Policy, Discrimination, Statistical study, Genetics, Genetic disease, Information
Notice produite par :
Inist-CNRS - Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique
Cote : 99-0069885
Code Inist : 002B30A11. Création : 31/05/1999.