The cost of COVID-19 treatment

WINK

As COVID-19 swept the world in 2020, insurers were covering 100% of medical expenses. Now, getting sick with COVID-19 could cost more than a million dollars.

In a severe case of COVID-19, moving to the next day becomes the only priority.

“You must fight and hope to survive. And pray. I prayed a lot, ”said Gina Chiki. She and her husband Albert know combat all too well.

Albert has barely returned home in a week after spending nine months hospitalized with COVID-19.

He suffered a stroke and “died” twice during his hospital stay, eventually recovering and coming home.

“I just woke up and he’s next to me. Or go to bed, I can kiss her to wish her good night. Gina continued, “I’m so happy to have her at home!”

But when the dust settles after a battle with COVID-19, survivors face another hurdle: piles of medical bills.

At a minimum, patients will have to pay their maximum deductible, which can reach five digits with some providers.

Jon Hess of Athos Health says the costlier scenario is even worse. The worst case scenario is not having insurance. This can then be very disabling. If you are hospitalized for an extended period of time, you can rack up over $ 1 million in expenses very quickly. It can be life changing, ”Hess said.

For Gina Chiki, the worst case is covered, “her medical expenses alone exceed a million dollars. Insurance covered a lot of it, thank goodness.

Experts say coverage started to change as the public gained access to COVID-19 vaccines.

“You now have the option of getting the vaccine, which will limit your chances of hospitalization,” Hess said.

Experts say this kind of coverage is likely to stay, but Hess said, “I see no incentive to say, we’re going to cover the covid 100%.”

You don’t think about that. All you can think of is reuniting your loved one with you and being healthy, ”said Gina. She and Albert treat each day like a blessing.

In between physiotherapy sessions, they can play with their dogs or watch their beloved Pittsburgh Steelers, simple joys that now seem like miracles.

As for their stack of bills piling up, “These bills will be paid when they’re done.” There is no way around it. Life goes on, ”said Gina.

Experts told WINK News that families can discuss payment plans and even pardon plans with hospitals if families are eligible. They don’t see a scenario where the COVID-19 vaccine or COVID-19 tests become more expensive.

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Eleanor C. William