By Dez Duran-Lamanilao
COVID-19: The Pandemic That Is Gripping the World
The coronavirus COVID-19 has affected over 200 nations and territories across the globe, with more than 5.5 million cases and over 340,000 deaths at the time of this writing. More than 2.3 million patients have recovered – and governments are incessantly finding ways to increase this number amidst the chaos that the pandemic has caused.
The US tops the list, with more than 1.7 million confirmed cases and almost 100,000 deaths. With these numbers, as a policyholder, you must be aware of what to expect in terms of healthcare coverage and future premiums.
COVID-19 and Health Insurance
Certainly, experts have their predictions concerning insurance premiums. Some warn employers to expect a rise in premiums in the succeeding years beginning 2021 while others believe that they will be minimal, citing countervailing factors such as the rare practice of insurance regulators to include one-time results in base claims. Nevertheless, access to critical information is vital in this difficult time.
So, what to expect in this pandemic? Here are some of the most common issues that may arise in terms of health insurance – most of them you should check with your provider so you can make wise decisions if the situation calls for it:
- Who pays for diagnostic testing and other services related to COVID-19?
- Cost-sharing for testing, in-network and in-patient admissions in treating COVID-19 or health complications associated with the virus, among others
- Out-of-pocket costs for primary care services
- Maintenance medication prescriptions
- Personalized results
- Authorization requirements for diagnostic tests
- Resources related to COVID-19 available to policyholders
- Telehealth claims and benefits
- Behavioral health visits
- Specific services available to children, seniors, and persons with disabilities
- Refill limitations
Consequently, your healthcare provider should be able to ensure that you are protected, whether you are staying at home to help prevent the spread of the virus or in need of testing or treatment. Discuss the above-mentioned issues in detail and do not hesitate to clarify if any explanation sounds vague. This is how you start protecting yourself and your family members from the pandemic. Stay safe. Incite hope. Look forward to more positive times ahead.