Japan: Insurers to ban use of genetic info
Source: Asia Insurance Review | May 2019
Japan’s insurance industry is establishing a guideline banning life and medical insurers from collecting or using personal genetic information for decisions regarding eligibility for coverage and premiums to prevent ‘genetic discrimination’, industry players say.
The Life Insurance Association of Japan has said that its member firms do not use genetic information to make decisions about coverage, but people with genetic diseases and private groups supporting them have voiced concerns about discrimination in the absence of a law prohibiting insurers from gaining such data, reported Kyodo News.
The industry group will state in its guideline that its member firms will continue their practice of providing insurance policies without collecting or relying on genetic information, according to the sources.
It will urge insurers not to use data from genetic testing even if people looking to purchase policies voluntarily offer their genetic data, it said.
In a Japanese government survey in 2017 on use of genetic information involving some 11,000 people, about 300 of them said they have experienced discriminatory treatment by insurers. A