This week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provided new data on the spread of COVID-19, which differs greatly from previous reports and is something that health insurance insurers want to include in their claims.
In its disease and mortality report the CDC states that between June and August, the virus was most common in people between the ages of 20 and 29 and accounted for more than 20 percent of all confirmed cases. It further stated that "across the southern United States in June 2020, the proportion of positive [COVID-19] test scores among adults aged 20-39 years increased before increases among those aged ≥60 years" by between four and 15 days.  Most of the Workforce
"This has profound implications for health insurance claims and workers," said Dr. Steven N. Weisbart, CLU, Triple-I & # 39 ;s senior vice president and chief economist. Early in the pandemic, COVID-19 was most common among adults aged 70 or older – people who are most retired. Now the CDC says that more than 50 percent of the confirmed cases during the reference period were among people between 20 and 49. This is the segment of the population that makes up the largest part of the workforce and tends to have health and life insurance.  They are also the most mobile part of the population, more likely than the elderly and disabled to spread the infection to colleagues, friends and family before they know they have it.
Indicating how significant the shift has been, Weisbart points out that in May the most affected age group was still 80 years and older, with a fall incidence of 4.04 per 1,000 inhabitants. In August, the most affected age group was 20-29 (fall incidence: 4.17 per 1,000).
"In August," says Weisbart, "the fall rate for the 80-plus group was down to 2.61 per 1,000."  Expanded workers comp coverage
The ultimate effect of the pandemic on workers' compensation is still not clear. It usually does not cover diseases such as colds or flu because they can not be linked to the workplace. Prior to the pandemic, according to the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI), at least 18 states had policies that assumed that firefighters and other first responders' chronic lung or respiratory illnesses were work-related and therefore covered.
Since the pandemic, some states have expanded coverage to include health care workers and other key employees. A common approach is to change government policy so that COVID-19 infections in some workers are assumed to be work-related. This imposes a workload on the employer and the insurer to prove that the infection was not work-related, making it easier for workers to file successful claims.