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AIDS insurance arrives
( 2003-09-17 09:50) (bjtoday.com)

While developing countries are bargaining for cheaper anti HIV/AIDS medicines and the technologies for mass production of them, a Chinese insurer has responded to the increasing awareness of the deadly disease by launching a policy for sufferers. However, consumers have complained that the criteria of the policy are too restrictive.

Tai Ping Life Insurance Co. launched the policy last month in Nanjing. For an annual premium of around 300 yuan (varying according to age and health), people will be entitled to a payment of 10,000 yuan if they are diagnosed with AIDS.

But the conditions attached to the policy are too strict, according to consumers. The policy only covers people who get AIDS from a blood transfusion in a hospital or blood center and it must be confirmed as a case of medical malpractice. Haemophilia patients are excluded from the list, because they have to receive blood transfusions regularly.

In addition, the policy offers no cover for people who contract the HIV virus; they only get compensation if it¡¯s full blown AIDS. But a member of the National Institute for Health Education said the policy represented a ¡°breakthrough¡±, and that it would have a positive effect in drawing attention to the plight of HIV/AIDS carriers.

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