Here’s the latest on how Coronavirus / COVID-19 is affecting the Lehigh Valley, and other important information you need to know.
Coronavirus Health Insurance Quotes in Lehigh Valley
We are currently in our offices working to provide health insurance quotes to those needing insurance, and we are available to our current clients to answer any questions about their current insurance obtained through our agency.
Questions on the minds of many Lehigh Valley residents are, "Am I covered if I contract Coronavirus?" and "How much will treatment cost me if I fall ill with COVID-19?" The first question is easy to answer. You are covered to some degree by your health insurance, however it is important to know that some people may have gaps in their coverage. This is largely determined by the amount of supplemental coverage a person has, such as hospitalization coverage. To answer the second question, it is largely unclear how much treatment will cost if you fall seriously ill and have to be hospitalized for Coronavirus (COVID-19).
Lehigh Valley Coronavirus Health Insurance Questions Answered Locally
We can review your health policy and let you know what gaps you may have in your insurance coverage that may pertain to Coronavirus. Some things that you should know right off the bat are the following:
Emergency care in hospitals is considered essential and must be covered. Hospitalization and emergency care are considered "essential services," but patients may still have to pay for things like copays and co-insurance, as well as annual deductibles from their health insurance policies. So far, several nonprofit and community health plans, including United Healthcare have committed to waiving costs of treating Coronavirus / COVID-19. Unfortunately, surprise bills are still a problem for people and are likely to come directly from hospitals or General Practioners.
If you are unclear on any aspect of your current coverage or need to obtain health insurance, please call us at 610-419-0634.
Many people infected with the Coronavirus have mild or even no symptoms, so their diagnosis can be confirmed by a test that providers often save for the most seriously ill.
In many scenarios, large communities across America are unable to care for the emerging Coronavirus / COVID-19 patients. Doctors who have led research teams have said, based on the average number of hospitalizations in other countries, models assume that at least 10% of coronavirus patients in the US will be hospitalized. So far, hospitalization rates in Pennsylvania have been low in the first two months of this year, but have been increasing in March and may continue to do so in April.
In the end of March, Pennsylvania's number of Coronavirus / COVID-19 cases soared from 33 cases to at least 644 residents who tested positive for the disease, including some Northampton County residents. The state health department has declined to provide more information about the number of Coronavirus / COVID-19 cases in Lehigh Valley as of this time.
How Coronavirus is Affecting Lehigh Valley College Students
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently issued guidance advising colleges and universities to consider asking students from abroad to return home. The number of new cases of Coronavirus that began climbing late last month is the highest in the US since the 2009 H1N1 outbreak, according to the CDC. Students who want to study abroad in Europe are afraid that their programs will soon be canceled because internships in China have been cancelled because of the coronavirus.
Northampton Community College continues to monitor the evolving Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation as they evaluate our plans for the spring and fall semesters. The top priority remains evaluating the health and safety of the students, faculty, staff and campus community.
Penn State has sent it's students home to stop the spread of Coronavirus. To help students return home and continue to learn Penn State and nearly all other Universities have instituted online courses that ensure students accross the country will continue to recieve their educations through the spring semester. University officials are in contact with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Those needing additional information on coronavirus can also contact the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCHD) or the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Call our Coronavirus Health Insurance Helpline - Lehigh Valley PA at 610-419-0634
Here are some current announcements on Health Insurance plans that now have special wavers for Lehigh Valley residents and our clients.
UnitedHealthcare Member Cost-Sharing Waived for COVID-19 through May 31
UnitedHealthcare has decided to waive member cost-sharing fees for treatment of COVID-19 through May 31, 2020. This applies to UnitedHealthcare's fully insured Commercial, Medicare Advantage, and Medicaid plans and furthers the company's previously announced efforts to waive cost-sharing for COVID-19 testing and testing-related visits.
Cost-Sharing Waived for Network, non-COVID-19 Telehealth Visits
Starting March 31 and extending through June 18, UnitedHealthcare will waive cost-sharing for network, non-COVID-19 telehealth visits. This will apply to fully insured individual and group market health plans, as well as Medicare Advantage and Medicaid plans. UnitedHealthcare previously announced waived cost-sharing for telehealth visits related to COVID-19 testing.
COVID-19 Special Open Enrollment Extended To April 13
UnitedHealthcare has extended the COVID-19 Special Enrollment Period (SEP) to April 13, and employers with both single and multiple plan options can buy down to a leaner plan for employees. There is a special open enrollment for members who previously waived coverage, including dependents, to provide additional access to care. Employers can do this without introducing any new plans from March 23 – April 13. Employers will continue to contribute to the cost of the coverage, and coverage will be effective April 1.
Federal Government Coronavirus Relief for the Lehigh Valley, PA
The bipartisan Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into law in March of 2020. The legislation is the largest stimulus package in modern history, and allocates nearly $5 billion in relief for Pennsylvanians including Lehigh Valley residents. It contains vast unemployment insurance that will cover gig workers and those who are self employed. It aims to provide relief to small and medium sized businesses, of which new information will be forthcoming. The bill also activates new vehicles to prioritize and improve meal delivery and nutrition services for seniors during the Coronavirus outbreak.
Check out what this means for you, your business, your school, and your hospital here on Congresswoman Susan Wild's website.
https://wild.house.gov/sites/wild.house.gov/files/CARES ACT GUIDE (2).pdf
Help & Relief for Lehigh Valley Small Businesses Hit by Coronavirus
The Coronoavirus crisis is hitting the Lehigh Valley's small businesses, and fear and uncertainty over their livelihood are struggles many people are dealing with. Congress and the Trump Administration made sure the CARES Act prioritized help for small businesses struggling with the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic.