What is Human API?

The Human API platform pulls all your medical records electronically to provide life insurance companies with a thorough analysis of your health history.

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Andrew HurstSenior Editor & Licensed Auto Insurance ExpertAndrew Hurst is a senior editor and a licensed auto insurance expert at Policygenius. His work has also been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, USA Today, NPR, Mic, Insurance Business Magazine, ValuePenguin, and Property Casualty 360.

Edited by

Antonio Ruiz-CamachoAntonio Ruiz-CamachoAssociate Content DirectorAntonio helps lead our life insurance and disability insurance editorial team at Policygenius. Previously, he was a senior director of content at Bankrate and CreditCards.com, as well as a principal writer covering personal finance at CNET.

Updated|3 min read

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The life insurance application process can take five to six weeks. But if you’d like to get coverage as soon as possible, some insurance companies use Human API to speed up the underwriting process.

Human API can significantly speed up a life insurance application decision by pulling all of your medical records electronically, letting you skip the medical exam. However, only a handful of life insurance companies use Human API to underwrite applicants — and your doctors also have to use the platform for it to work.

If Human API isn’t available to you and you’re unable to take the medical exam at this time, there are other options available to get coverage quickly and safely.

Life insurance terms you should know
  • Beneficiaries: The people you name on your life insurance policy to receive the lump sum of money — also known as the death benefit — when you die.

  • Cash value: The portion of a permanent life insurance policy’s monetary value that grows tax-deferred over the life of the policy.

  • Death benefit: The amount of money the life insurance company will pay your beneficiaries when you die.

  • Face amount: The dollar amount, or death benefit, your beneficiaries receive if you die while your life insurance policy is active.

  • Insured: The person who is covered by the insurance policy.

  • Policy: The legal document that includes the terms and conditions of your life insurance contract.

  • Policyholder: The person who owns an insurance policy. Usually, this is the same person as the insured.

  • Permanent life insurance: A type of life insurance that lasts for the rest of your life and usually includes a cash value account.

  • Premium: The amount you pay your insurance company to keep your coverage active. Premiums are typically paid monthly or annually.

  • Riders: Add-ons to a life insurance policy that provide more robust coverage, sometimes for an extra cost.

  • Term life insurance: A life insurance policy that lasts for a set number of years before it expires. If you die before the term is up, your beneficiaries receive a death benefit.

  • Underwriting: The process where an insurance company evaluates the risk of insuring you and determines your final rate.

What is Human API?

Part of the life insurance application is a thorough evaluation of your medical history and health. This includes questions about your background, a medical exam, and sometimes an attending physician’s statement (APS). Traditionally, any requested records have to be mailed or faxed. The entire process can take a few weeks.

Human API eliminates the need for this process and enables insurers to fast-track the application process. Instead of requiring you to take an entirely new medical exam to gauge your health, applications using Human API pull information from your previous doctor’s visits using Electronic Health Records (EHR).

Insurers have the information they need within 20 minutes and are able to make an application decision shortly after — getting you life insurance coverage almost immediately.

Learn more about the life insurance underwriting process

How does Human API work?

Insurers won’t be able to pull your records without your consent; the entire process complies with HIPAA and requires your authorization. There are a few steps you’ll need to take to permit Human API access:

  • Read through your email invitation and terms and conditions.

  • Accept the terms and conditions disclosure.

  • Locate and enter your provider’s information.

  • Connect your account.

  • Give permission for your records to be released.

Any of these records come directly from your medical provider and cannot be modified by you or the Human API platform.

What records are available through Human API?

The information that Human API releases to your insurer will only be about your medical background — and legally, can only be used for its intended purpose. Insurers will likely have access to details about your medical visits, diagnoses, test and lab results, medications, and immunizations. You’ll be able to see any records that the insurer can access.

If you decide you don’t want insurers to have access to your medical records, you can rescind access at any time — just know that those records then cannot be used for your life insurance application and you might need to take the medical exam to get coverage.

Are you eligible for Human API?

Your ability to use Human API when buying life insurance largely depends on its availability. To use it for your life insurance application, your prospective insurer must use Human API to gather medical records and your medical providers must already use the program to store data. If both parties don’t already participate, the platform won’t be able to access your information.

What if your insurer or medical provider doesn’t use Human API?

Even if you’re unable to use Human API to fast track your life insurance application, you can still get quick coverage. Instant decision life insurance policies like the Brighthouse SimplySelect policy don’t require a medical exam and, similarly to Human API, pull your records while you’re on the phone applying (with your consent).

Some applications require further investigation, but if your application is approved, your life insurance coverage can become active almost immediately after your phone call.

If you’re not eligible for an instant decision life insurance policy, you also have the option of getting a no-medical-exam life insurance policy. The application evaluates your health using your previous records, but not instantly.

No-medical-exam policies tend to take the less time than traditional life insurance policies to retrieve and analyze your previous records, but you’ll still have to wait a few weeks to get coverage. To make sure your loved ones are financially protected in the interim, you can get temporary coverage.

The Human API platform speeds up the life insurance application process and can get you necessary coverage almost immediately, but it’s not always available. If you'd like to forgo taking an in-person medical exam, you can apply for coverage from an insurer that offers no-medical-exam coverage.

Author

Andrew Hurst is a senior editor and a licensed auto insurance expert at Policygenius. His work has also been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, USA Today, NPR, Mic, Insurance Business Magazine, ValuePenguin, and Property Casualty 360.

Editor

Antonio helps lead our life insurance and disability insurance editorial team at Policygenius. Previously, he was a senior director of content at Bankrate and CreditCards.com, as well as a principal writer covering personal finance at CNET.

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