COVID's Impact -- Work Comp Payers and Service Companies Weigh in
If you really want to know what COVID is doing to workers' comp, you have to hear from those on the front lines.
35 workers' comp insurers, TPAs, state funds, self-administered employers, and service companies gave me their views on the impact of COVID19 and employment on their businesses, claims counts, costs – and how they are adapting to a very different climate.
COVID claim costs are pretty low, with just a handful of claims exceeding a few hundred thousand dollars.
Shutdowns/Lockdowns = drop in payroll + business closures -> premium decreases, delayed RTW
Respondents see total claim counts dropping 20% for 2020
Tele-everything is growing rapidly, but still has a long way to go
Many filed claims are not accepted because:
patient does not have a positive COVID test
patient is asymptomatic
Employers tend to give workers exposed to COVID19 two weeks of paid leave; they become WC claims if/when medical care is needed to treat COVID
Presumption is a concern, but less so than it was a couple months ago
Winners and losers
Service companies with the following attributes are generally doing much better than their counterparts:
no or low debt service cost and
on-shored business functions that
provide services typically used later in the claim's life e.g. pharmacy.
Here are more details – and your free copy of the summary report is here.
A comprehensive version of the report including respondents' detailed statements (respondents are not identified) and the accompanying raw data is available for purchase; contact jpadudaAThealthstrategyassocDOTcom. (substitute symbols for capitalized letters)
What does this mean for you?
For workers' comp, the economic fallout from COVID is far more significant than COVID itself.
Disclaimer: WorkersCompensation.com publishes independently generated writings from a variety of workers' compensation industry stakeholders. The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of WorkersCompensation.com.