Term Life Insurance: Do you need a Medical Exam?

In many cases when buying life insurance, the applicant will need to undergo a medical exam. The application process for a life insurance plan is simple enough and it is usually followed by a visit from the paramedical examiner. The medical exam that is performed by the paramedical examiner can usually be performed in the comfort of the applicant’s own home, or nearly any location the applicant would like because the paramedical examiner will come to the applicant. However, if tests are required by the insurance company that the paramedical examiner is unable to perform outside of a medical office, the applicant may need to go a medical facility.

When is a Medical Exam Needed?

The medical examination that life insurance applicants must complete follows closely to when the application is submitted to the insurance company. Once the application has been submitted and reviewed, the insurance company will take care of arranging for a local company to send out a paramedical examiner who will conduct the necessary tests. After the paramedical examiner has been notified they will contact the applicant to set up a time and location that is convenient for the applicant to do the tests.

Paramedical Examiner

The paramedical examiner is the individual who, in most cases, will come to the applicants’ location to perform the medical exam. The paramedical examiner simply performs the exam, runs the necessary tests and records all of the information needed to determine if the life insurance plan will be approved and if so, at what rating. There are typically three ratings, preferred plus, the status with the lowest premium; preferred, the category that most healthy people fall into; and standard, which has the highest premium.

What is involved in the Medical Exam?

The medical exam is a thorough test that is completed by the paramedical examiner or a qualified individual to determine the current medical status of applicant. The medical exam includes a blood test, a urine sample, often an oral fluids sample or a cheek swab, a blood pressure testing, a cholesterol reading via the blood test, height and weight verification and an HIV test. All of the tests provide the life insurance underwriters with the necessary information needed to make a decision about the application and to determine what life insurance plan the applicant qualifies for.

Prepare for the Medical Exam

Preparing for the medical examination can help an applicant get the best results. To start with, fast for 8 hours prior to the exam. Limit the intake of salt and other foods that can increase cholesterol for at least 24 hours before the examination. Avoid strenuous physical excursion for at least 12 hours, some recommend 24 hours prior to the exam and limit caffeine and nicotine at least one hour before the exam. Drink a glass of water one hour before the exam. Be prepared to supply photo identification at the time of exam as well.

When applying for a life insurance policy, in many cases, the applicant will be subject to a physical medical exam. The life insurance company will arrange for a paramedical examiner to perform the tests necessary to determine the health of the applicant. The visit with the paramedical examiner is the personal interview that is conducted to collect the applicants’ personal medical history and to evaluate the current health of the applicant.

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