A Symptom Of Our Oversharing Society

, , , , , | Right | October 28, 2018

(I work for a travel insurance company. One of the things we  do is medical screening. If you have certain pre-existing medical conditions — such as asthma, angina, or diabetes, etc. — you need to pay a small extra premium to cover you. None of us are medically trained; we just input the illness and ask whatever questions our system presents. We need to know exactly what the illness or condition is, and if any medication is taken, exactly what that is, too.  A woman calls who has just bought her insurance for a trip, and we are now onto the medical questionnaire as she has said, “Yes,” to having a pre-existing medical condition.)

Me: “Okay, can you tell me what medical conditions you have and what medication, if any, that you take for it?”

Customer: “Oh… I have a venereal disease.”

Me: “I need to know which one specifically.”

(The customer then proceeds to go into graphic detail about her illness, because she’s not quite sure which one it is.)

Me: *interrupting* “Madam! I’m not medically trained! I can’t diagnose what it is from your symptoms. I need to know the name of the illness.”

Customer: “Oh. I’m not sure.”

Me: “If you can’t find any paperwork, I suggest calling your doctor. If you take any medication, get them to confirm it, as well, and call back and give us your policy number. Once you have all the relevant information, we can continue the questionnaire.”

Customer: “Okay. Thanks for your help!”

(When the customer hung up I had to go and get some water as I felt queasy. Whatever she had, it was unpleasant, I can tell you that.)

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