The Medical Information Bureau (MIB) is a resource that operates as a data-sharing organization within the insurance industry. Its primary purpose is to provide information to insurance companies about an individual's medical history, helping them make informed decisions during the underwriting process. Here's how the Medical Information Bureau works:
1. Information Collection:
- When you apply for health or life insurance, the insurance company may request your consent to access your medical information from the MIB.
- The MIB collects and maintains a database of medical information contributed by its member insurance companies. This information includes details such as medical conditions, treatments, medications, and adverse health events reported by insurance applicants.
2. Information Sharing:
- Insurance companies that are members of the MIB can request access to the MIB database to obtain relevant medical information about an applicant.
- The MIB provides a centralized platform for sharing this medical data among its member companies, allowing them to make more accurate risk assessments and underwriting decisions.
3. Privacy and Consent:
- The MIB operates under strict privacy and security guidelines to ensure the confidentiality and protection of individuals' medical information.
- Before accessing an applicant's medical information, insurance companies are typically required to obtain the applicant's consent and inform them about the use of MIB data in the underwriting process.
4. Impact on Insurance Applications:
- When an insurance company accesses the MIB database, they can review an applicant's medical history and compare it with the information provided in the insurance application.
- The MIB data may help insurance companies identify inconsistencies or potential misrepresentations in the applicant's medical information, ensuring the accuracy of underwriting decisions.
5. Consumer Access to MIB Information:
- Individuals have the right to request a copy of their MIB file to review the information it contains.
- If discrepancies or inaccuracies are identified, individuals can work with the MIB and their insurance companies to correct any errors in their records.
It's important to note that the MIB is not involved in providing insurance coverage or making insurance decisions. Instead, it serves as a resource for insurers to access and share relevant medical information during the underwriting process, promoting fairness and accuracy in the insurance industry.