Dutch offer first HIV life insurance policy
9 March 2005, AMSTERDAM — Dutch insurance companies are set to break new ground by offering the "first ever" affordable life insurance policy to people infected with the HIV virus.
9 March 2005
AMSTERDAM — Dutch insurance companies are set to break new ground by offering the "first ever" affordable life insurance policy to people infected with the HIV virus.
The policies will be available for people who are responding positively to treatment and do not have any further complications. Infection with the HIV virus can lead to AIDS.
The Dutch Association of Insurers has advised its member to draw up life insurance policies for HIV-positive people and six of the Netherlands' largest life insurers have promised to heed the recommendation.
Association director Eric Fischer said the chance of dying from AIDS has been greatly reduced due to the use of new medicines.
He said if treated properly, infection with HIV is akin to a chronic illness and research has indicated the chance of death is comparable with people diagnosed with diabetes or obesity, newspaper Trouw reported on Wednesday.
The cost of life insurance premiums will be comparable with those offered to people who have diabetes or are obese. It is expected that 25 percent of the 10,000 HIV patients in the Netherlands will be able to take out the new life insurance policies.
The size of this group is expected to substantially increase in coming years as it is estimated the number of people with HIV is double the amount of registered patients.
People with HIV presently find it difficult to take out life insurance, which in turn makes important transactions more difficult. For example, a life insurance policy is often a pre-requisite to take out a mortgage.
"You can thus safely argue that we have a world premiere with this broadly accessible and affordable insurance," Fischer said.
The insurance policy is based on research conducted by the Dutch HIV Association and the foundation HIV Monitoring.
Since 1996, these groups have studied and mapped the results of the HIV treatment dubbed Haart (Heart).
Successful treatment with Haart will be one of the most important conditions patients must satisfy to gain life insurance. They will also need to have started on Haart after 1 January 1998 and should not have followed any other treatment.
[Copyright Expatica News 2005]
Subject: Dutch news