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Genetics and insurance in the United Kingdom 1995-2010: the rise and fall of scientific discrimination

Thomas, R. Guy (2012) Genetics and insurance in the United Kingdom 1995-2010: the rise and fall of scientific discrimination. New Genetics and Society, 31 (2). pp. 203-222. ISSN 1463-6778. (doi:10.1080/14636778.2012.662046) (KAR id:29804)


Around the millennium there was extensive debate in the United Kingdom of the possible use of predictive genetic tests by insurance companies. Many insurance experts, geneticists and public policymakers appeared to believe that genetic test results would soon become widely used by the insurance industry. This expectation has not been borne out. This article outlines the history of exaggerated perceptions of the significance of genetic test results to insurance, with particular reference to the United Kingdom, suggesting reasons why they arose and also why they have declined. The article concludes with some speculation about how policy on genetics and insurance might develop in future.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1080/14636778.2012.662046
Uncontrolled keywords: genetics, insurance, discrimination, adverse selection, loss coverage, moral panic
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BJ Ethics
H Social Sciences > HG Finance
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Computing, Engineering and Mathematical Sciences > School of Mathematics, Statistics and Actuarial Science
Depositing User: Guy Thomas
Date Deposited: 07 Jul 2012 13:17 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2021 10:07 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

University of Kent Author Information

Thomas, R. Guy.

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