May 2020 Issue
by Brelynn DuMortier
Tired of hearing repetitive advice to stay healthy these days?
Yes, we know to wash our hands and not touch our faces.
But here are some other helpful tips to keep you safe and healthy:
Know your health insurance policy: Do you know your deductible? Copays? Is preauthorization required for anything? Who is in-network? The answer to most of these questions is in your insurer’s online member portal. Log in and look for things like Certificate of Coverage, FAQs, Policy Information, Provider Search, etc. You can also call the customer service number on the back of your insurance card, but with most everyone working virtually, you may have a longer wait.
Watch for communications from your insurance provider: Read everything your insurance company sends you. Many have free virtual doctor visits for any reason right now. Many cover all COVID-19 expenses for testing or treatment. Various insurers offer mail order prescriptions, diabetic supplies and offer access to nurse phone lines and call-in emotional support access. Take advantage of all the resources they offer to keep you from having to go to a medical provider or pharmacy.
Get covered: If you’ve lost health insurance coverage within the last 60 days, or expect to in the future, you can get coverage and maybe even with a tax credit to help pay the premiums. If you haven’t lost coverage recently, you can still get catastrophic coverage, which covers COVID testing and limits how much you must pay if you get sick or injured.
Watch out for scammers: Unfortunately, scammers come out when people are most vulnerable, so you must be extra careful right now. Scammers have been offering free COVID test kits, vaccines and medical supplies. Some say Medicare or Medicaid will pay for treatment if you give them your personal information. They will call and ask you to “verify your information” so they can deposit your stimulus money, or send you your check. They will call and say a loved one is sick in the hospital and needs money for treatment. Emails are rife with “Click here” offers for all the above.
Review other important papers while you are at it: Have you reviewed your car insurance lately? Your life insurance? What about your will, powers of attorney and health care directives? If you have time on your hands, you might as well clean up the important stuff and not just your closets. Until next time, stay safe and healthy!