Long-term health problems following a COVID-19 diagnosis are likely to affect workers' compensation industry indefinitely now that it is considered a disability by the federal government, experts say.
The Office for Civil Rights of the Department of Health and Human Services and the Civil Rights Division of the Ministry of Justice in July provided joint guidance on what is known as "long COVID", which it describes as a list of symptoms known to be among COVID -19 patients who have overcome initial infection. Such symptoms include fatigue, chest pain, shortness of breath, joint or muscle pain, and difficulty concentrating.
"We are in the long run," says Beth Burry ̵
The symptoms are different, require care from different types of practitioners and a lot of coordination is needed among suppliers, she said.
"A large number of medications have been thrown at the symptoms," said Burry – Jackson. There is no protocol because the symptoms are so great (and) these are imprecise symptoms, not where you can prescribe something and do it. What we are looking at is developing some of the best practices along the way. "
Data are limited on the cost of long-term covid-19 care in the Comp system," said Jeff Eddinger, head of Boca Raton, Florida-based National Council on Compensation Insurance, which has calculated COVID-19 damage costs since the pandemic began.
Most claims, he said, are only compensation which does not include medical expenses and only support income while an affected worker is on the verge of recovering from the virus.
According to the latest figures from NCCI, workers injured by COVID-19 accounted for more than 45,000 injuries by 2020, with more than 95% costing less than $ 10,000. Most claims closed quickly, with only about 1% exceeding $ 100,000, Eddinger said.
"I do not suggest that we should not keep an eye on long-term claims about COVID," he said, adding that "The system is sound in terms of handling COVID claims. It has not burdened the workers' compensation industry "so far.
The handling cases should be careful, which can change, especially as long as COVID now falls under the management of disability management, experts say.
"We have just begun to understand the long-term damage that the disease causes to a significant portion of patients," wrote Phil Walls, Tampa, Florida-based clinical director of myMatrixx, an Express Scripts company, in an email.  Herr. Walls said that "accepting compensation for a COVID claim can incur costs far beyond the possible hospitalization and initial phase of treatment.
For those patients who develop more severe symptoms after covid … the treatment and its costs can last the patient's life Other symptoms may not incur the same treatment costs but will create other problems, including disability. "