Let’s talk about diabetes. This is a chronic condition associated with high levels of glucose (sugar) in the blood. Insulin hormone produced in the pancreas helps to turn glucose from the food we eat into energy. When the body doesn’t produce enough insulin or doesn’t effectively use the insulin produced, it increases the amount of sugar in the blood and can lead to diabetes.
Types of diabetes:
- Type 2: Occurs when the body is resistant to insulin and cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. This is the most common form of diabetes.
- Type 1: Occurs when the body produces little to no insulin. This is an autoimmune type of diabetes and generally diagnosed early in life. Latent diabetes in adults is a slow-progressing form of autoimmune diabetes.
- Pre-Diabetes: Also referred to as impaired fasting glucose and impaired glucose tolerance, this occurs when glucose levels are higher than normal but still below the level for a diabetes diagnosis.
- Gestational Diabetes: Occurs during pregnancy and generally resolves after delivery. Women with gestational diabetes have an increased chance of developing Type 2 diabetes later in life.
A1c blood testing (average blood sugar) is key in determining severity when diagnosed as well as ongoing level of diabetic control.
Complications from diabetes can include neuropathy (nerve damage), kidney disease, retinopathy (vision problems caused by damage to the retina), stroke and cardiovascular disease.
Now let’s talk about some potential underwriting outcomes for Life coverage:
- Type 2 diabetes may qualify at a Standard rate class with good diabetic control and no complications.
- Type 1 diabetes could be as good as Table 2 for over age 50 in a best case scenario. Higher table ratings would apply for ages 50 and under depending on diabetic control and any complications.
- Pre-diabetes and gestational diabetes may qualify at Standard Plus.
Contact our Underwriting Team for help in pre-screening your client living with diabetes.