Information about coronavirus (COVID-19)
The Idaho Department of Insurance is responding to COVID-19 with online resources and steps to protect public health and maintain a strong insurance market to serve Idahoans in the insurance market. We fully support the efforts of Governor Little and his initiatives to protect our citizens and mitigate the spread and severity of COVID-19. The DOI remains fully committed to its mission.
As this is a fluid situation, we suggest signing up for our DOI mailing list so you can stay informed on news releases and updates.
The following links provide useful information on the latest developments of the COVID-19.
- Idaho Rebounds: Our Path to Prosperity – Stages of Reopening
- COVID-19 and Your Health Idaho
- Idaho official resources for the Novel Coronavirus and latest cases in Idaho
- FAQs from the Office of the Governor
- The President’s Coronavirus Guidelines for America
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- Latest cases in the U.S.
SHIBA (Senior Health Insurance Benefits Advisors) webinars
To limit the spread of COVID-19, SHIBA is available by phone and email. Please call us at 1-800-247-4422 or send an email to SHIBA.
- Toolkit for older adults and people at higher risk
- General Information for Medicare Beneficiaries
- General Information for Medicare Beneficiaries (Spanish)
- Visit the DOI SHIBA website
COVID-19 Producer Information
If you have specific questions about licensing, please send an email to Licensing.
COVID-19 Business Interruption Insurance Frequently Asked Questions
Idaho Department of Insurance Updates
Director Cameron released several news releases regarding actions and updates on COVID-19 in the insurance industry.
- April 27 – DOI publishes bulletin and FAQ on business interruption coverage
- April 17 – Short-term health insurance plans join ACA plans in COVID-19 testing and treatment
- April 10 – Idaho health carriers to provide relief during COVID-19 pandemic
- April 03 – DOI to release bulletins regarding COVID-19
The Department of Insurance has released several bulletins granting unprecedented regulatory flexibility in certain areas for health insurance companies and producers to help Idahoans retain and use their coverage. The DOI is considering and continuing to work on other efforts in this complex and fluid situation. The bulletins are as follows and with links to the full documents:
- Waiver of Eligibility and Premium Provisions (Bulletin 20-01): This bulletin applies to health insurance carriers offering individual or employer sponsored group major medical health and dental insurance policies, allowing flexibility regarding premium deferral, premium holidays, continuation of coverage, grace periods, and waiver of eligibility requirements. The goal is to provide carriers and employers with the tools to retain coverage even while temporarily closed or operating in reduced hours.
- Waiver of Pharmacy Policy Requirements (Bulletin 20-02): This bulletin allows flexibility of prescription provisions for all fully insured plans, including the allowance of early refills, 90-day supply, and avoidance of in-person signature logs and subsequent audits of pharmacies.
- Waiver of Certain Telehealth Enforcement Requirements (Bulletin 20-03): This bulletin applies to health insurance carriers offering telehealth benefits through individual or employer sponsored group major medical health insurance policies. Flexibility is granted to expand telehealth access to all in-network providers and expand how telehealth services can be received.
- Provisional Producer Licenses (Bulletin 20-04): This bulletin allows new producers and applicants for producer licenses the procedure for obtaining a provisional producer license during the COVID-19 emergency. A provisional resident producer license is valid for up to six months and does not renew automatically at the end of the license period.
- Waiver of Property or Casualty Requirements (Bulletin 20-05): This bulletin relates to the waiver of fees, penalties, or other charges relating to the temporary inability to submit premium payments and extensions of grace periods for premium payments. The DOI encourages policyholders to use electronic payment methods when possible.
- Financial Filing Flexibility (Bulletin 20-06): The Department notifies authorized insurers of flexibility regarding compliance with regulatory requirements. Some regulatory filing deadlines may be extended 30-days or 60-days and companies should submit a request for extensions if they believe filing deadlines cannot be met.
- Extension of Transitional Plans (Bulletin 20-07): This bulletin provides for further extension of transitional health insurance plans as long as CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) continues to allow extensions. Transitional, or “Grandmothered,” plans are individual or small group policies issued from 2010 through 2013, and then renewed annually with only minor modifications.
- Business Interruption Coverage (Bulletin 20-08): This bulletin provides expectations on how interruption claims should be handled. The DOI encourages policyholders to review their policies and to contact their agent or carrier to discuss coverage. Some policies may expressly exclude payment for damage caused by viruses or communicable diseases. A policyholder’s loss may warrant review to determine applicability of specific exclusion language.
- Workers’ Compensation (Bulletin 20-09): The DOI has accepted the national Council on Compensation Insurance’s (NCCI) April 21, 2020 filing revisions for COVID-19. Revisions are effective March 1, 2020 and are valid through December 31, 2020. NCCI has established a rule defining “paid furloughed employees”. In addition, it addresses the coding and reporting of payments made to those employees as well as the rate that will be charged for those payments.
These bulletins will remain in effect so long as the Governor’s emergency proclamation remains in effect. Other flexibility and provisions are currently being considered and will be made available when appropriate.
National Association of Insurance Commissioners
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) has established a resource page to support the public, business community and insurance professionals understand and manage the risks of the current outbreak of COVID-19, commonly known as coronavirus. While one can’t predict how the current situation will unfold, the NAIC believes understanding the history of previous events and knowledge of the current situation can help people understand and reduce their current risks. We encourage you to review and share this site with others in an effort to limit the human and economic impacts of COVID-19. We invite you to visit the NAIC coronavirus resource center.
Who can I call with my insurance question?
The Department is maintaining operations to assist consumers.
- If you are unable to satisfactorily resolve an issue with your insurance carrier, we are here to help you. Please reach out to our Consumers Affairs team by phone at (208) 334-4319 or toll-free from an Idaho number (800) 721-3272 or by email.
What about ACA enrollment and options in Idaho?
We are continually monitoring the situation daily under the direction of Idaho’s Office of the Governor. While it is our understanding that a diagnosis of a disease is not currently criteria for a Special Enrollment Period, we are aware that there are national discussions about adding one regarding COVID-19.
Idaho is in a somewhat unique situation in that two health insurers are offering individuals in Idaho an ongoing enrollment option with the fully-comprehensive Enhanced Short Term Plans, so anyone who wishes to purchase major medical coverage today can obtain it. We will continue to assess and have not ruled out any future actions.
What about ACA Special Enrollment Periods and options in Idaho?
Idahoans who have lost employer-sponsored health insurance as a result of termination, layoff, or furlough due to COVID-19 are eligible for a Special Enrollment Period. In partnership with the Idaho Department of Insurance and Idaho insurance providers, Your Health Idaho has relaxed the requirements for eligible Idahoans to enroll during this critical time.
Under the newly relaxed policy, a written statement explaining the loss of employer health benefits is the only documentation required to enroll. To request a Special Enrollment Period, visit Your Health Idaho’s Loss of Coverage to complete the form provided.
Important: Verification documents proving loss of coverage are not required to complete a Special Enrollment Period request. However, you may be asked to provide verification after enrollment to maintain insurance coverage. If requested, you will have 60 days from the date of the notice to submit documentation to Your Health Idaho. If acceptable documentation is not submitted, your enrollment could be retroactively cancelled.
Do you qualify for loss of coverage? If you or someone in your household recently lost, or expects to lose, qualified health insurance coverage, you could be eligible to enroll with Your Health Idaho. You could qualify for a Special Enrollment Period (SEP) if you experienced one of the following Qualifying Life Events (QLE) in the last 60 days:
- Loss of employer (or spouse’s employer) coverage
- Loss of other coverage such as Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, Tricare, PeaceCorps or AmeriCorps coverage
- Exhaustion of employer-sponsored COBRA or PERSI benefits
- Discontinuation of marketplace coverage
- Dependent turns 26 and ages out of parents’
- Death of primary subscriber
Idahoans have additional health insurance options with ongoing enrollment so no Qualifying Life Event is required. Fully-comprehensive Enhanced Short-term Plans are offered by SelectHealth and Blue Cross of Idaho, and several carriers offer nonrenewable short-term health insurance. Contact the Department or a health insurance agent for more information about these options.
Accessing Idaho Telehealth providers
Idaho has five carriers, some of which have expanded access to telehealth and telemedicine services during these unprecedented times in order to give Idahoans more options to see the care they need.