How COVID Has Affected Employee Healthcare and Costs

In this second episode of a mini-series based on the 2022 Employee Health Trends report, we talk with co-author Janet Young, M.D., Lead Clinical Scientist at Springbuk, about the impacts COVID-19 has had on employee healthcare and employer benefit plans.

Armed with data from more than 30,000 COVID patients, Janet and her fellow data analysts split the research into individuals who had COVID into hospitalized and non-hospitalized to get a better understanding of what was happening within each group.

Their findings were stunning: during a six-month period after an initial COVID diagnosis, hospitalized patients cost about 70% more than the researchers expected. Even non-hospitalized patients saw an increase of about 25%.

What’s this mean for employee benefit plans? As the pandemic seems to be drawing to an end, employers need to be mindful that doesn’t mean their healthcare costs will immediately drop. 

And besides the costs for acute care, the data show many people, unsurprisingly, have post-acute care mental health issues that may linger for an extended time. 

Listen as Janet provides recommendations for both employers and their employees. 

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Theme music: "Overboard" by Stay Outside