Still unvaccinated? There’s an increasingly pressing reason – beyond the threat to the health of you and your loved ones – to get the shot against COVID-19: many health insurance companies are no longer waiving out-of-pocket costs for COVID treatment.
A new study has found 5% of privately insured COVID-19 patients were billed an average of $3,800 between March and Sept 2020, when most insurers *had waived* OOP costs for COVID care.
At one time, nearly 90% of private health insurers in the U.S. had waived co-pays, coinsurance and deductibles for COVID care. But that number has been dropping since the start of 2021, when vaccines became readily available.
Tens of millions of Americans who have insurance through their employer or through Medicare Advantage now face thousands of dollars in out of pocket costs if they are hospitalized with COVID.
These decisions by insurers to stop waiving out of pocket costs for COVID care come as they continue to report RECORD profits.
That profiteering has continued into 2021, with UnitedHealth reporting $5.7 billion in profit in Q3 of this year.
Waiving out of pocket costs will drive insurer profits even higher, as the C-suite of America’s largest health insurance companies no longer have to pick up the deductible tab for COVID hospitalizations and deaths.
The moral of the story: get the shot, not simply to preserve your health, but also to ensure you don’t shell out thousands of extra dollars to insurance companies who are already making a killing on COVID.