Covid discrimination? Insurers assess the risks

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Covid discrimination? Insurers assess the risks

Insurance companies do want to know if you have the coronavirus when you apply for life cover

Journalist

Three months after suffering a bout of Covid-19 infection, a 34-year-old Pretoria woman decided that it was time to financially secure her future and take out a life cover. To her surprise, when she applied telephonically for a R1m life cover at Standard Bank/Liberty Group on January 29, she was told she didn’t qualify for the cover due to her exposure to the virus.

“The consultant took me through the health-check questionnaire, and one of the questions was whether I’ve had Covid-19 in the past. When I told her that I had tested positive in October she went like ‘oops-a-daisy’! I then asked if there was a problem, and she said, unfortunately I didn’t yet qualify for the life cover that would pay out should I die of natural causes. She said I only qualified for an accidental cover, which left me shocked as I had very mild Covid-19 symptoms and was never even hospitalised.”

“I felt quite discriminated and punished for having tested positive for Covid-19. In fact I even regret disclosing it. Since that day I’ve been warning people not to disclose their Covid-19 status as it can affect one’s future negatively. I felt quite taken aback,” said the mother of one...

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