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Thailand Changes Insurance Rules to Void Coverage for Mild Covid-19 Cases

Thai Life Insurance Association Thailand

Thailand’s Insurance Commission changed rules for making claims on coronavirus insurance policies, officially denying coverage for asymptomatic patients.

In line with new rules put out by the Public Health Ministry, a the Office of the Insurance Commission announced Tuesday that Covid-19 treatment compensation is available only for patients with body temperatures exceeding 39 degrees Celsius for longer than 24 hours, more than 25 breaths per minute for adult patients, oxygen saturation below 94%, changing symptoms for patients with underlying illnesses, doctors’ requirement for close observation and breathing difficulty, fatigue and lower appetite for child patients.

The changes take effect Feb. 15 and comply with the new relevant rules that the Public Health Ministry imposed on Jan. 4.

The rule changes come as Thai insurance companies are going broke paying out for Covid-19 claims, with many policies issued early in the pandemic offering lump-sum payments. In recent months, insurers have denied coverage, made failed attempts to cancel policies before they were used, or tried to shut down their businesses.

OIC Assistant Secretary-General Apakorn Panlert said the Thai Life Assurance Association pushed for the changed rules to prevent those who are asymptomatic or have mild symptoms from filing a Covid-19 insurance claim for treatment and daily compensation.

The changed conditions had no impacts on Covid-19 insurance policies offering lump-sum compensation upon infection confirmation, Apakorn said.