Insurance companies have pledged to treat doctors and other healthcare professionals in the same way as other workers when it comes to applying for protection insurance amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Association of British Insurers (ABI) has written to the British Medical Association (BMA) to clarify that each policy application for life insurance or income protection is assessed individually, regardless of profession.
The letter comes after the BMA wrote to the ABI raising several concerns on behalf of members seeking to secure IP and life cover in recent weeks.
Dr Chaand Nagpaul CBE, BMA council chair, had said that the trade union “firmly believes” that doctors and other healthcare professionals should not be “discriminated against” when it comes to applying for insurance.
ABI director general Huw Evans wrote: “I can confirm that anyone who has had a positive antigen test will be considered on an individual basis and the same as an applicant who is currently experiencing symptoms for COVID-19 but has not yet had a confirmatory test.
“Healthcare workers will not be disadvantaged in this way and we do not want to discourage people from taking appropriate tests in keeping with government policy to test and trace. Likewise, insurers will take the same approach to any individual who has had a positive antibody test.”
The trade bodies issued a joint statement to stress that there should be no detriment to healthcare workers and that no-one should be discouraged from having tests done.
The joint statement said: “Having discussed the issue in detail, the BMA and ABI are clear that there should be no detriment to health care workers and no one should be discouraged from having a test.
“Each application for life insurance and income protection will be assessed on an individual basis, regardless of profession, and focussed on the person’s health and severity of any symptoms at the time.
“A positive test for COVID (either a PCR or antibody test) should not delay an application as long as the individual has recovered and been back at work for the required period.”