The World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19 a pandemic on March 11, 2020. Most government sponsored medicine across the world covers the testing and care for infectious diseases like COVID-19. Internationally speaking, private, employer sponsored coverage typically won’t cover this care once a disease is declared a pandemic. (See Asinta’s COVID-19 country reports to learn more.) Also, many Asinta Partners report that patients experiencing COVID-19 symptoms have to go to a state-sponsored health facility for treatment anyway.
However, the USA is in a special situation because private, employer-sponsored health insurance covers most of its citizens who have coverage. Now that the disease is declared a pandemic, what does that mean for American employers and employees?
Good news just came in
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released guidance on March 11, 2020 that lets high deductible health plans, with health savings accounts (a popular approach in the USA), eliminate cost-sharing for COVID-19 medical testing and treatment. This legally clears the way for employers to offer lower cost COVID-19 care and treatment if they choose to do so.
Read this article from Modern Healthcare News to see how this decision could work for an employer.
Expect regular articles such as this from the Asinta Partnership as the global impact of the coronavirus unfolds.