If you're living with well-managed HIV and are wondering if you can get high-quality life insurance cover, the simple answer is now 'Yes!'
Eligibility will always depend upon a person being on treatment like Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy (HAARTS) and having an undetectable viral load (or being very close to undetectable) with no associated related multiple disorders.
Understanding undetectable viral load
The term undetectable viral load appears everywhere from lab reports and medical journals to social media and life insurance questionnaires. Here are some key terms and concepts to help people understand and explore what 'undetectable' means.
- HIV hijacks cells in your immune system and uses them to replicate (make more copies of itself), destroying those cells in the process. HIV is the virus that causes AIDS.
- Viral load refers to how many copies of HIV are present in a milliliter sample of blood.
- Viral load testing is a way to estimate how much HIV is in the blood. It's used to monitor immune function and see how well HIV treatment is working.
So what's so important about 'undetectable viral load?' These two videos will help answer that question. Below is a useful video about the goal of having an undetectable viral load.
If you like details, the video below video provides a deeper overview of how everyone benefits from an undetectable viral load.
Why you need a specialist adviser to help you get life insurance
In reality, someone living with HIV is still more likely to be turned down for life insurance by mainstream insurers than someone who doesn't have this condition. If you are offered cover, you'll pay about the same premium as other people with pre-existing conditions such as cancer, certain kinds of heart conditions or smokers.
Below are the current good case and best case criteria for a person living with well-managed HIV who we can help.
Good case scenario
- Diagnosed HIV+ diagnosis more than 3 years ago
- You have received Highly Active Anti-retroviral treatment (HAARTS) since diagnosis
- Your viral load is currently undetectable and you have no history of AIDS-defining illness
- Your CD4 lymphocyte count is in the normal range.
- You have no history of Hepatitis C and no history of IV drug use
Best chance scenario
- You were diagnosed between the ages of 20-39
- Your viral load was low at time of diagnosis.
- You have been HIV + for 5 or more years and have kept to your treatment plan.
- Routine blood work, including kidney and liver functions, is stable and normal.
- Your CD4 count was HIGH at the time of diagnosis.
- Hep B surface antigen is negative.
- You're a non-smoker.
- You are currently practicing safe-sex and/or are in a monogamous relationship.
- You are not being treated for non-HIV STD's
- You are free of early coronary artery disease or renal disease signs.
We give you the best chance of success
At Unusual Risks, we understand and track the detailed and ever-changing underwriting criteria and the medical requirements that insurers need to work with.
- We can present you in the most favourable light so that your chances of success are the highest.
- We use technology to help us anonymously pre-assess your medical position so that any potential difficulties can be dealt with without the need to identify you and create a permanent record that might influence a future application.
- By understanding your health position before you make any formal application, we know ahead of time with a high degree of certainty what the result of a formal life insurance application will be.
And we've been helping people just like you and their families and partners for over 20 years now.