Health Insurance & COVID-19 – What is Covered?
July 13, 2020
Health Insurance During A Pandemic – How Do I Stay Safe?
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic certainly took the world by surprise, with every sector of the economy coming to a grinding halt. While the coronavirus itself has infected more than ten million people across the globe and resulted in more than half a million deaths, its impact has been amplified by the lack of adequate medical resources to deal with the infections. Even as some communities around the world begin to reopen, it calls for governments to put healthcare at the forefront. Although the best way to cushion yourself from the illness is to avoid exposure, health insurance is necessary too. Health insurance coverage can cushion you from the hefty medical bills associated with COVID-19 treatment and rehabilitation.
Health Insurance is Your Best Friend in Bad Weather!
As an individual, the best way to mitigate the undesirable effects of health-related issues is by investing in a health insurance plan. Other than leaving you physically and mentally debilitated, health complications can burden you and your family with hefty bills from treatments, medication, and hospitalization. This is where health insurance can kick in to rescue the situation. A typical health insurance policy often covers medical and hospitalization expenses related to various types of illnesses. Other policies may include some riders to cover additional expenses related to critical illnesses, as well as income in case of steep expenditures in medical services.
How to Stay Safe From COVID-19
Coronavirus is a strain of virus that causes an illness similar to regular flu in humans. Its symptoms are also similar to those of other flu and may include cold, cough, fever, shortness of breath, and other respiratory issues. So far, it’s unfortunate that the virus has no vaccine or approved medication. This makes the virus even more dangerous, so you should take all the necessary precautions to avoid exposure to the virus and to avoid infecting other people.
Some of the precautionary measures recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) include staying at home, wearing a mask in public places, and washing hands thoroughly with soap or alcohol-based sanitizers. Here are the safety precautions in more details:
- Stay at home as much as you can.
- Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for not less than 20 seconds. In the absence of soap and water, use a hand sanitizer with a minimum of 60% alcohol content.
- Avoid touching your nose, eyes, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Steer clear of having close contact with sick people. Even people without symptoms may spread the virus.
Practice social distancing by maintaining at least 6 feet away from each other.
- Wear a face mask to cover your mouth and nose when around others or when in public places such as grocery stores.
- Cover your coughs and sneezes using a disposable tissue and dispose of in a lined trash can. If a tissue isn’t available, cough or sneeze into your elbow:
- Clean and disinfect all frequently touched surfaces daily.
Can Health Insurance Cover You if You Become Sick?
Despite all these precautionary measures, it is possible that someone can still contract this disease. Health insurance policy can come to your aid even during these difficult times. According to health insurance experts, if you have an existing health insurance policy and contract the sickness, then treatment and hospitalization will be covered by the policy. However, if you purchase a policy after contracting the virus, you will not be entitled to get coverage.
What Your Insurance Pays
While many insurers are helping covered patients pay for coronavirus-related costs, it’s difficult to figure out exactly what is covered — and what isn’t. Generally, your health insurer will pay for testing or treatment stemming from the disease.
All comprehensive health insurance policies cover 100% of the cost of coronavirus testing, plus any visit to the emergency room, urgent care center, or doctor’s office that may have led to the testing. That includes COVID-19 tests that are summoned by the US Department of Health and Human Services. However, if you’re insured by a short-term health insurance policy that isn’t compliant with the Affordable Care Act (ACA), your insurer may not foot the bills associated with your test.
Insurance companies are also obliged to provide free antibody testing for coronavirus patients under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The test is meant to measure blood for immune proteins. This helps to indicate if someone carries the virus and may need protection from future infections. If you do not have insurance, Medicaid will cover the full cost of COVID-19 testing due to the CARES Act.
Treatment Co-pays and Co-insurance
Dozens of insurance companies have waived co-insurance, co-payments, and deductibles for all coronavirus treatments, including hospital stays. However, it’s important to note that these waivers are applicable only to in-network care. For out-network care, different insurers offer different cost-sharing rates among health insurance plans. So, it’s important to contact your insurance company to find out exactly what your plan covers and what isn’t should you or any of your family members require treatment for the virus.
Life can be uncertain, and nobody is absolutely immune to the coronavirus. However, what you can do is to prepare for uncertainties ahead of time by adjusting to the new normal. A critical part of this preparation is to purchase a health insurance plan. An insurance policy will cushion you from potential medical and financial turbulence should this virus knock home. More importantly, observe all the WHO recommended precautionary measures to stay safe during this global pandemic.
If you are in need of a new health insurance plan, use FindQualityInsurance.com to connect with the best carriers. It is important to have health insurance during a pandemic. Use Find Quality Insurance to protect yourself and cover costs associated with future illnesses.