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Posted March 20, 2020

Coronavirus costs

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On Wednesday night, President Trump signed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to help Americans with expenses related to the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ve compiled three key takeaways from this piece of legislation.

 

Coronavirus testing

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act states that testing for coronavirus is free, including the cost of a doctor’s visit or testing in an emergency room. This comes after last week’s notice from the IRS, which stated that High-Deductible Health Plans (HDHPs) would cover the cost of coronavirus-related testing and treatment, even if the individual covered by the HDHP hadn’t met their deductible.

 

Telemedicine expenses

Telemedicine (or telehealth, as it’s often called) has played an important role in enabling healthcare professionals to screen patients to determine if they should be tested for coronavirus. Wednesday’s legislation specifically addressed expenses related to telemedicine as being covered.

 

Paid emergency leave

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act provides up to two weeks of paid leave to individuals affected by the coronavirus in a variety of ways, including those being tested or treated for it. There is also a provision for employees who have family members affected by coronavirus or who have children at home or daycare because their schools are closed.

 

The WEX Health Cloud platform helps employers, consumers and benefits administrators navigate the complex consumer-directed healthcare market by efficiently administering HSAs, HRAs, FSAs, VEBAs, COBRA, defined-contribution, wellness and transit plans. Learn about it here.

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