COVID-19: Carrier Enhancements


COVID-19: Carrier Enhancements

March 17th, 2020

Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 in the United States, the CEO’s of major US health insurance companies met at the White House on March 10, 2020 and agreed to waive costs for certain services such as the COVID-19 test, telemedicine services and prescription refill limitations. Whether you are an employer sponsoring a fully-insured or self-funded plan, it is important to understand the insurance companies response to how certain benefits are being enhanced to address this global pandemic.  For the fully-insured health plans these changes are happening automatically.  Self-funded plans thus far have the option to adopt these enhancements.

On March 11th, The Internal Revenue Service advised that high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) can pay for COVID-19 related testing and treatment, without jeopardizing their status. This also means that an individual with an HDHP that covers these costs may continue to contribute to a health savings account (HSA).

If self-funded plans are adopting changes to their health plan, it is important to amend your plan document and provide notification to employees.  While the cost for some of these enhancements are inexpensive, it is best practice to make sure you are communicating any changes to your stop loss carrier.

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