COVID-19: Updates on cost-sharing and Special Enrollment Period
Member cost-sharing waived for COVID-19 through May 31
UnitedHealthcare is waiving member cost-sharing for the treatment of COVID-19 through May 31, 2020, for its fully insured commercial, Medicare Advantage and Medicaid plans. This builds on the company’s previously announced efforts to waive cost-sharing for COVID-19 testing and testing-related visits. Read more here.
Cost-sharing waived for network, non-COVID-19 telehealth visits
Starting March 31 through June 18, UnitedHealthcare will waive cost-sharing for network, non-COVID-19 telehealth visits for fully insured individual and group market health plans, as well as its Medicare Advantage and Medicaid plans. UnitedHealthcare has previously waived cost-sharing for telehealth visits related to COVID-19 testing. Read more here.
COVID-19 special open enrollment extended to April 13
UnitedHealthcare has extended the COVID-19 Special Enrollment Period (SEP) to April 13, and employers* with multiple plan options also can buy down to a leaner plan. Options include:
- Add a special open enrollment for members who previously waived coverage, including dependents, to provide additional access to care. Employers can do this without introducing any new plans from March 23 – April 13 (extended from April 6). Employers will continue to contribute to the cost of the coverage, and coverage will be effective April 1.
- Buy down to a leaner plan:
- Employers with a single-benefit offering that wish to buy down to a leaner plan may do so between now and May 31. They also can re-enroll their population to the leaner plan design.
- Employers with multi-option plan designs can temporarily buy down to a leaner plan. If employers decide to conduct a SEP when adding the plan, new enrollees who previously waived coverage can select from any of the plans offered by the employer provided they are eligible and the employer contributes to the cost of coverage. Existing members can also move to the lean plan design, but no other benefit changes are permitted.
- Add a lean plan design but no SEP: Consistent with the buy-down approach, employers will have until May 31 to add a lean benefit. In that instance, existing members can move to the new lean plan design. No other benefit changes are permitted. New enrollees previously waiving coverage are excluded beyond the April 13 cutoff for SEP.
*Applies to NICE, PRIME, UNET, CIRRUS/PULSE, All Savers® and SIERRA fully insured customers.