Being sure of genes

The United Kingdom has decided to allow insurance companies to use genetic test results to decide whether a person be given a life insurance or not. At present, only tests for Huntington's disease, a degenerative brain disease, is being considered. But in the future, tests for six more diseases may be considered. In other words, it could result in denial of insurance to a person who is healthy but has a flawed genetic make-up, which may or may not result in some disease in the future.

Until now, it was not necessary for patients to divulge tests results to insurance companies. But the Genetics and Insurance Committee, under the government's health department, has given the insurance companies the right to demand the results.

Consumer rights groups opposing the step feel this is going to deprive the most needy the benefit of insurance. There is also a fear of creating a