Feb 28, 2023 - COVID-19, Disability Insurance for Doctors by Seltzer & Associates
Medical professionals can agree that long Covid is serious and results in a wide range of debilitating conditions. Someone who was otherwise healthy can be brought down by this virus quickly or slowly, with lingering effects that may not even be recognized as a symptom for a significant period of time. However, diagnosing long Covid can be challenging which in turn can complicate everything from receiving medical treatment to adjusting to new limitations as they are lined to Covid or not, and even obtaining disability insurance benefits.
Over the last few years, research has been dedicated to learning more about Covid, the spread of infection, chances of relapse, and lingering effects. As new variants of Covid emerge, there is even more to investigate to gain a better understanding of how to classify and treat Covid related symptoms and disorders. This field of study extends to disability insurance companies. In the early days of Covid, there was so much uncertainty regarding prognosis or even survival, it was not clear whether Covid would or even could be a covered condition when pursuing disability insurance benefits. Now that we have more information about Covid, related conditions, and long Covid, your disability insurance benefits attorney is able to assist with your claim and secure your financial well-being when long Covid prevents you from practicing medicine.
Additionally, the difficulty in diagnosing long Covid has added a layer of resistance to approvals for disability insurance benefits. If a claimant is suffering from a combination of symptoms rather than an easily identifiable disabling condition, insurance companies do not have a clear basis for approval of disability insurance benefits. Without a proper diagnosis to fit into the approval metrics, insurance companies deny claims for disability insurance benefits despite the condition of the insured.
Seltzer & Associates has taken on many disability insurance cases related to Covid. We have fought for our clients through the difficult times when insurance companies prevented approval of disability insurance benefits for medical professionals serving at the front lines of the pandemic because Covid was such an unknown. As research has revealed how serious, debilitating, and long-lasting Covid can be, the doors to approval of disability insurance benefits have opened, but this process can still be an arduous fight. Seltzer & Associates has your back as you pursue your financial security while disabled and unable to work due to Covid.
How Many People Are Affected by Long Covid?
A true measure of the scope of long Covid is still an evolving measurement but recent publications from the American Heart Association have compiled data sources to suggest the following:
- 5 to 30% of Covid survivors are at risk for developing long Covid
- 1 in 5 people aged 18 to 64 suffer from a condition related to prior Covid infection; this rate increases to 1 in 4 of the people age 65 or older
- Over 200 symptoms have been associated with long Covid
It should be noted that research studies and data sources can vary greatly in size and scope, which could either provide enlightenment into long Covid or could skew results and perpetuate difficulties in diagnosing long Covid. Of course with the rapid rate of Covid research, this information can change quickly.
Diagnostic Difficulties Impact Treatment for Long Covid
In addition to difficulty diagnosing long Covid, treating physicians can have a difficult time knowing where to start treating a long Covid patient. In some severe cases, the initial treatment could be an aggressive approach to calm enough symptoms to treat the larger ailments or systemic causes. With comorbidities, treating physicians need to decide the best approach to take in treating sufferers of long Covid while remaining agile to switch treatment plans should it be in the patient’s best interest. Some treating physicians will focus on solving one set of long Covid problems, such as focusing on cardiovascular health before addressing issues such as brain fog. It truly depends on the situation and the variance does not make it easier to treat long Covid.
Another concern regarding treatment for long Covid is coordinating care and ensuring appropriate care is maintained throughout the disability insurance process. Not only is it crucial for a long Covid sufferer to maintain their treatment for health reasons, but disability insurance companies factor receiving ongoing medical care into their long-term disability decision process. While the business justification makes sense, it puts patients with difficult-to-diagnose disabling conditions at a disadvantage in securing the disability insurance benefits they need and deserve.
If you have been denied your disability insurance benefits due to complexities with diagnosing long Covid, you need to begin working with an experienced disability attorney to appeal your denial. Likewise, if your disability insurance company terminates your long-term disability insurance benefits because your diagnosis becomes vague due to long Covid diagnostics, or for any other reason, reach out to a long-term disability lawyer as soon as possible.
Long Covid and Partial Disability
Another challenge to obtaining your disability insurance benefits due to long Covid is your policy definitions. You may be able to perform some activities or duties that preclude you from a total disability finding that would grant you your disability insurance benefits. If your policy includes coverage for residual disability, you may find some financial relief by obtaining this coverage and doing some work. You will also want to review other policy definitions that will impact your claim, such as own occupation and any occupation.
Seltzer & Associates has ample experience working with insurance companies nationwide with an array of policy types and definitions. Coupled with our experience fighting for Covid disability insurance benefits from the early days of the pandemic, we are equipped to take your claim all the way. Seltzer & Associates will not stop fighting for our clients just because diagnostic difficulties are standing in the way of the disability insurance benefits you deserve.
Schedule a Free Consultation with A Disability Insurance Lawyer
If you are a doctor disabled by long Covid, you need to access your disability insurance benefits. Contact Seltzer & Associates online or by calling 888-699-4222 to schedule your free consultation.