A wise man once said something to the effect of "I don't care what you believe, just don't tell me I have to believe it too." In today's world we are bombarded by misinformation from all multiple groups with differing agendas.
It seems that there is a group of anti-vaxxers who are spreading "non-truths" on social media regarding the Covid vaccine. Their whopper of a lie is that if you get the vaccination and die somewhere down the road, the insurance company won't pay the claim because the vaccine is considered "experimental". Nothing could be farther from the truth.
According to the American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI), life insurance policies have not changed and getting the shot will not change whether a policy will pay out in the event of death.
The stories are being circulated on social media platforms like TikTok, Facebook and Twitter. One such post read like this:
"I just spoke with my insurance company because I was curious that if I got the vaccine for Covid and passed away from complications, would my life insurance be valid? Well, guess what?? They confirmed they would not pay out my policy because the vaccine is experimental. Wake up!!!" posted on Facebook.
A video on TikTok encouraged people to call their life insurance company to verify they would have coverage. The ACLI has tried to be proactive in fighting back this kind of information, while handling a huge increase in phone calls regarding the matter.
Getting the shot could affect life insurance, but not in the way mentioned in the posts. Actually, if enough people get the vaccine, it could limit any life insurance rate increases that could have resulted from the Covid deaths.
"Only if the vaccine itself increased mortality would you expect it to increase life insurance premiums. and there is no evidence of that so far," said W. Bruce Vogel, an associate professor in the Division of Health Outcomes and Implementation Science at the University of Florida. He continued, "The fact that the vaccine is being given so widely suggest at least an implicit finding by the FDA that the potential rewards outweigh the risk."
Even local officials are having to combat this flow of misinformation. In Oklahoma, Insurance Commissioner Glen Mulready, had to issue a statement confirming that Covid vaccinations would not affect life insurance policies.
"This simply not true," said Mr. Mulready. "Whether it's Phizer, Moderna or the Johnson and Johnson, these vaccines received Emergency Use Authorizations after the Food and Drug Administration determined their safety and efficacy. I assure you that getting a Covid-19 vaccine will not affect your life insurance benefits."
Of course Mr. Mulready encouraged the residents of Oklahoma to contact their insurance carriers if they have doubts.
The main question in all of this is why people go to the lengths of perpetuate this kind of misinformation. As I stated earlier, people have agendas which may or may not be steeped in fact. Years ago a study was released stating that children's' immunizations were the causes of autism, and many people refused to have their small children vaccinated as a result. Even when the study, which consisted of a very small number of children, was proven to be false, many parents continue to cite it as their main reason.
As they say, "you can un-ring that bell."
So now we are in a situation where many people are suspicious of the Covid vaccine because they feel that it has been "rushed to market". The fact is that most of the labs had broken the virus down gnomically within a few days of getting samples, which means that they were months or years ahead of schedule by using medical advances like RNA testing. And they were able to develop vaccines quickly based on data that came faster than normal.
More importantly, suggesting that the vaccine could affect your life insurance (or any other insurance) is blatantly wrong. My suggestion for those folks that have read this kind of garbage need to find the sources and block them immediately. These "news" sources are more about fear and propaganda than giving accurate information.
If you have concerns, feel free to reach out to your agent or the carrier directly. In the meantime, please stay healthy.
Chris Castanes is the president of Surf Financial Brokers, helping people find affordable life and disability insurance coverage. He's also is a professional speaker helping sales people be more productive and efficient and has spoken to professional and civic organizations throughout the Southeast. And please subscribe to this blog!