DENVER — March 19, 2020 — Today, Colorado’s largest workers’ compensation insurer, Pinnacol Assurance, launched an array of new efforts to support Colorado businesses and their employees as they navigate the unique threat of the coronavirus. These efforts will help address the needs of first responders and frontline healthcare workers, and alleviate financial pressure for the Colorado businesses Pinnacol insures. Pinnacol also provided additional guidance to its customers whose employees may have been exposed to the coronavirus.
Covering the needs of first responders and frontline healthcare workers
Pinnacol feels strongly that workers who are at the greatest risk for contracting COVID-19 through their work should be covered for the time of their quarantine. Accordingly, Pinnacol is instituting an emergency policy to provide wage replacement benefits to first responders and frontline healthcare workers for up to 14 days of quarantine. The cost of this benefit will not be applied to the premium calculation of our healthcare and first responder policyholders. This is a time-limited benefit, and no benefits will be paid after the quarantine period has ended unless the worker develops COVID-19. In those cases, the existing statute regarding payment of work-related infectious disease will apply. Note that all claims of exposure, regardless of profession, must demonstrate by a preponderance of evidence that the exposure resulted from the course and scope of the employee’s work in order to be admitted.
Starting on March 23, 2020, through April 22, 2020, Pinnacol will keep policies active and won’t cancel coverage for policyholders unable to make their regularly scheduled payment. Cancellation notices will be withheld during this time to allow agents and businesses time to work with Pinnacol on flexible payment options.
Guidance about COVID-19 testing
Pinnacol will pay for provider-ordered COVID-19 testing for employees of Pinnacol insureds who may have been exposed through their work. Should the test results be positive, current state law regarding workplace exposure will apply in order for Pinnacol to pay for further COVID-19-related treatment and benefits.