“No Solution to This Dilemma Exists”: Discrimination, Insurance, and the Human Genome Project
The debate about whether insurance companies should be allowed to use results of genetic tests for underwriting purposes is both lively and increasingly relevant as both technology and lawmaking efforts are progressing rapidly. Much concern has been raised about whether allowing firms to use such information to create risk-rated insurance premiums (genetic ratemaking) is unfairly discriminatory. We show that, especially in the context of the manner in which insurance markets operate, arguments about the appropriateness of allowing such information use by insurers which are based on discrimination are very fragile from a conceptual or philosophical perspective. Moreover, a focus on discrimination is not very helpful from a pragmatic or policy oriented perspective. We argue that adopting a Utilitarian welfare framework, as inspired by Harsanyi’s (1953,1955) veil of ignorance interpretation, in order to determine whether risk-rating by use of genetic test results is morally defensible provides a much more promising line of reasoning for settling this controversial issue.
|Date of creation:||2008|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1|
Phone: (519) 824-4120 ext. 53898
Fax: (519) 763-8497
Web page: https://www.uoguelph.ca/economics/
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- repec:dau:papers:123456789/5369 is not listed on IDEAS
- Michael Hoy & Julia Witt, 2005.
"Welfare Effects of Banning Genetic Information in the Life Insurance Market: The Case of BRCA1/2 Genes,"
0505, University of Guelph, Department of Economics and Finance.
- Michael Hoy & Julia Witt, 2007. "Welfare Effects of Banning Genetic Information in the Life Insurance Market: The Case of BRCA1/2 Genes," Journal of Risk & Insurance, The American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 74(3), pages 523-546.
- Wilson, Charles, 1977. "A model of insurance markets with incomplete information," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 167-207, December.
- Dionne, G. & Doherty, N. & Fombaron, N., 2000.
"Adverse Selection in Insurance Markets,"
Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales de Montreal-
00-05, Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales de Montreal-Chaire de gestion des risques..
- Bossert, Walter & Fleurbaey, Marc, 2000.
"Equitable Insurance Premium Schemes,"
2000-05, Rice University, Department of Economics.
- Mattias K. Polborn & Michael Hoy & Asha Sadanand, 2006. "Advantageous Effects of Regulatory Adverse Selection in the Life Insurance Market," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 116(508), pages 327-354, 01.
- Hoy, Michael & Polborn, Mattias, 2000. "The value of genetic information in the life insurance market," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(3), pages 235-252, November.
- Michael Hoy & Fabienne Orsi & FranÁois Eisinger & Jean Paul Moatti, 2003. "The Impact of Genetic Testing on Healthcare Insurance," The Geneva Papers on Risk and Insurance, The International Association for the Study of Insurance Economics, vol. 28, pages 203-221, 04.
- John C. Harsanyi, 1953. "Cardinal Utility in Welfare Economics and in the Theory of Risk-taking," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 61, pages 434-434.
- Wagstaff, Adam & van Doorslaer, Eddy & van der Burg, Hattem & Calonge, Samuel & Christiansen, Terkel & Citoni, Guido & Gerdtham, Ulf-G & Gerfin, Mike & Gross, Lorna & Hakinnen, Unto, 1999. "Equity in the finance of health care: some further international comparisons1," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 263-290, June.
- Amy Finkelstein & James Poterba, 2002. "Selection Effects in the United Kingdom Individual Annuities Market," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(476), pages 28-50, January.
- Ania, Ana B. & Troger, Thomas & Wambach, Achim, 2002. "An evolutionary analysis of insurance markets with adverse selection," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 40(2), pages 153-184, August.
- Michael Hoy & Peter Lambert, 2000. "Genetic Screening and Price Discrimination in Insurance Markets," The Geneva Risk and Insurance Review, Palgrave Macmillan;International Association for the Study of Insurance Economics (The Geneva Association), vol. 25(2), pages 103-130, December.
- Michael Hoy & Michael Ruse, 2005. "Regulating Genetic Information in Insurance Markets," Risk Management and Insurance Review, American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 8(2), pages 211-237, 09.
- Richard V. Burkhauser & Timothy M. Smeeding, 1994. "Social Security Reform: A Budget Neutral Approach to Reducing Older Women's Disproportional Risk of Poverty," Center for Policy Research Policy Briefs 2, Center for Policy Research, Maxwell School, Syracuse University.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:gue:guelph:2008-8. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Stephen Kosempel)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.