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The Basics of the Life Insurance Screening Test

Before you will be able to obtain a life insurance policy, most insurance companies will require you to complete a medical exam. The only exceptions to this rule would be if you are obtaining a policy through an employer or if you are obtaining a policy with a low value, in which case the insurer may not require a medical examination to be completed.

Similarly, if you purchase a guaranteed issue policy, a medical examination will be unnecessary. Otherwise, you should expect to undergo a medical examination before you will be issued a policy.

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Reducing Risks with the Help of Medical Examinations

Although undergoing a medical examination might be a bit of a hassle, the reason the insurance companies require you to undergo one is so they can determine your level of risk. The greater your risk of actually having to cash in on the policy, the greater your premium rates will be.

The medical examination also serves as a tool to help the insurance company determine whether or not you answered the medical questions on your application honestly. Of course, it is possible that a medical exam will reveal medical problems that you didn't know you had. At the same time, if you claim to not be a smoker and nicotine is found in your system, it is a sure sign that you were being less than honest when you filled out your application.

 

Determining Your Health Risk with a Screening Test

When you fill out your life insurance application, you will answer a number of questions regarding your current health as well as your medical history. Based on this information, the insurance company will determine a preliminary quote. This quote may change, however, based upon the results of your medical examination.

More than likely, your medical examination will involve taking both a urine and a blood sample, which will be used to determine if you are suffering from health issues such as diabetes, kidney disease and HIV. The samples will also be used to test whether or not you are taking any prescription medications or illegal drugs as well as to determine if you are a smoker.

If you have illegal substances in your system, you likely will not be approved for coverage. Similarly, if you claimed on your initial application that you were not a smoker, but nicotine is found in your system, you will likely be quoted a new rate that is higher than the one you were originally provided.

 

Tips for Getting the Best Rate Possible

  • Avoid foods containing poppy seeds, such as certain types of bagels and muffins, prior to the test
  • Avoid eating for at least 8 hours before the test - going for 12 hours is even better
  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day before the test as well as the day of the test
  • Try to schedule your exam for the morning if possible
  • Avoid drinking tea, coffee and other caffeinated drinks for 24 hours before the test
  • If you use tobacco products, avoid using them for 24 hours before the test
  • Avoid consuming alcoholic beverages for at least 24 hours before the test
  • Avoid using nasal decongestants for 24 hours before the test
  • Get plenty of sleep the night before the test
  • Schedule the appointment at a time and place where you will feel the least stressed
  • Don't exercise for 24 hours before the test

 

It is also important to note that you will not need to get undressed for your exam, but you should wear short sleeves or a shirt with sleeves that are easy to roll up. This way, it will be easier for the examiner to take your blood pressure and pulse readings.

In addition, you may want to gather information about any surgeries, treatments or medications you are taking. This way, you can provide the information to the examiner right away and get the entire process completed as quickly as possible.