I'm taking a moment out of my holiday festivities to update the blog on a post I did back in October. My regular readers may remember that I applied for life insurance. I already have some, but it's not enough and because it's reached maturity, the rates go up every year.
When TOG and I decided that we'd re-do our life insurance with another company a couple years ago, I was turned down. That's an odd moment in your life because you start to wonder if you're not insurable, maybe you ought to be getting your affairs in order.... However, my wonderful Dr. had a theory (maybe they were reading more into my records than there was), and did a ton of testing and scans that showed in the end that I'm just an asthmatic and that there's nothing else wrong.
So this year, we completed testing and he said go ahead and apply, your medical records will support you this time. So I applied to a company that my broker said was good with insuring asthmatics. The company I currently have is not and they would require a physical to reissue any policy other than the small one I have now.
So they called Wednesday to tell me that I'd been accepted and to call them to get the paperwork rolling. So I call Thursday. Oh... they accepted me. With an additional premium because of my asthma. A 32% rate hike. Is this how they're good with insuring asthmatics? I'm considering my options now... taking out a smaller policy than planned... reducing the term of the insurance. Saying bag it and coming up with plan B.
I guess if I were going to say I learned something from all this, it would be: If you are diagnosed with a chronic yet treatable illness, assess your life insurance immediately. Because if you wait a few years, you will have a preponderance of medical records that show you receive care regularly, sometimes regular medication review, sometimes elevated care.... In my case that regular care keeps my asthma under reasonably good control. But all in all, based on the questions I was asked back in October, and what my medical records revealed, I think it played against me in terms of affordable life insurance.
There's a myriad of emotions right now... uppermost is frustration... I'm frustrated at all the costs associated with my asthma. I pay a lot of money to have asthma: doctor co-pays, in office treatments, home nebulizers, daily meds, emergency meds, scans and testing, hepa filters, the list goes on. Now I have to pay substantially more for life insurance on top of that? And the emotional costs, things I can't do, places I can't go, products I can't use. Gah.
I'm can't even work up to anger at this point, just sadness. But what bothers me the most at this point is that they didn't look at my quality of life, or what I can do. It doesn't matter to them that I can throw down a 30 mile bike ride or run more than two miles or climb 5 miles up the side of a mountain. I know they have to look at risks (and I guess mine are pretty substantial), but I wish they'd looked at the whole me, the "functional me" as well as the lunger.
We now return to your holiday programming already in progress... (stay tuned tomorrow for a happy announcement!)