Companies raise health care costs for unvaccinated employees, US visitors benefit from travel insurance

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To many it may seem that the world is in the final stages of the global pandemic that has caused mass unrest and caused many lives. However, private companies are now taking the lead in enforcing greater health mandates for their workers.

This comes as the US struggles to get more people to get the Covid-19 vaccine, leaving many others vulnerable to infection.

The costs of not taking a vaccine

The travel ban in the United States, which began in early 2020, is still in place, banning or severely limiting travel from some countries deemed “high risk” for Covid-19. But recent announcements suggest the ban may soon be lifted, leading many entrepreneurs to take the application of inoculation into their own hands.

A famous example of this is Delta Airlines which has announced that it will charge unvaccinated employees an extra $ 200 for their monthly health plans. According to the company, this is due to rising hospitalization costs within the United States. Other companies and health insurers have or should follow suit, with many private employers looking for ways to penalize those who jump the needle.

But there is a limit to the scope of these “economic punishments”. The Affordable Care Act passed in 2014 prohibits companies from charging higher costs for health plans based on pre-existing conditions. The only exception to the rule is smoking.

Studies show that unvaccinated people are more at risk for severe Covid-19 cases that require special medical attention. Data from the Ohio Department of Health shows that more than 96 percent of hospitalizations in the state involved patients not vaccinated with the disease.

The higher premiums are not that significant compared to the average hospital costs for coronavirus-infected patients. Depending on age and health, these costs could range between $ 34,000 and $ 45,000.

A risky trip to the United States

Lack of space and medical care due to the overwhelming need to deal with unvaccinated cases of Covid-19 makes the United States a travel risk for foreigners. Coronavirus related health insurance for visitors to the United States could protect against sudden infections and related costs.

Not to mention the burden on these institutions and the need to address more severe conditions that may or may not be met. The US health care system subsidized over $ 6 billion between last June and August. According to Kelly O’Reilly, president of the Ohio Association of Health Plans, companies are now looking toshare some of that cost with consumers who refuse protection against the disease.

“Employers see it as an incentive to vaccinate their employees. I also think it’s an attempt to gain control of some of the costs associated with Covid, “he said.” I think they are trying to protect their employees, keep their businesses running and therefore keep costs down. “

The US currently requires proof of a negative Covid test for all arriving passengers, including US citizens with 72 hours of departure. Travelers can also submit a positive test with a note from a healthcare professional stating that the patient is okay for the trip.

Additionally, the United States requires all foreign visitors to be fully vaccinated with one of the approved vaccines. These include the Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson vaccines. The World Health Organization has also recognized those from AstraZeneca and Sinovac, but others like Russia’s Sputnik V are still under review.

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