You can reassure your employees: they are properly protected in case of an epidemic or pandemic. And not just by their hospitalisation insurance.
UPDATE - HOSPITALISATION - LIFE/DEATH - INCOME PROTECTION - What happened to my insurance cover if one of my employees was temporarily unemployed due to the effects of the coronavirus?
The law of 7 May 2020 on exceptional measures in case of temporary unemployment due to COVID-19 states that your employees in temporary unemployment due to the coronavirus were automatically still covered by the insurance policies (supplementary pension/hospitalisation/outpatient care/income protection/premium waiver) that you had taken out for them, and the cover provided for in the contract would be maintained until 31 March 2022. As an employer, you also had the option of deferring premium payments for the employees affected until 31 March 2022.
The continuation of pension accrual and risk coverage in this specific situation is determined by law and does not imply a change of the pension commitment. However, the law stipulates that the pension regulations must be formally amended by 31 December 2022 at the latest. The COVID-19 Pandemic Addendum forms part of this obligation. This addendum includes the exceptional measures that were temporarily in force during the pandemic. It will be added to each set of regulations in AG EB Online. Employers without AG EB Online will receive the addendum by post, asking them to add it to their pension plan regulations.
This formal, legal amendment only concerns pension plans. It does not impact Healthcare contracts.
HOSPITALISATION - INCOME PROTECTION - If a staff member gets vaccinated against COVID-19, can coverage be claimed via his/her corporate hospital plan, outpatient care plan and/or income protection plan?
HOSPITALISATION - Vaccination (all vaccines, including COVID-19) isn't covered by outpatient care insurance or hospitalisation insurance. If, however, a staff member is admitted to the hospital due to COVID-19 vaccine-related complications, coverage can be claimed for the inpatient stay through his/her corporate hospital plan.
INCOME PROTECTION - If a staff member gets vaccinated against COVID-19 and, as a result of this injection, ends up having to take incapacity leave due to an incident referred to in the corporate income protection plan, s/he will be able to claim coverage through this income protection plan.
RETIREMENT/DEATH – If, after being vaccinated against COVID-19, your staff member ends up dying as a result of this injection, will the beneficiary(ies) be entitled to his/her death benefit coverage?
If, after being vaccinated against COVID-19, your staff member should die as a result of the injection, his/her beneficiaries will be able to claim his/her death benefit proceeds.
COVERAGE ABROAD - What happens to coverage abroad in the various zones (green, orange, red)?
If you have a staff member travelling abroad, s/he will be entitled to coverage in the event of an illness, accident or repatriation.
It is very important, however, that your staff member strictly complies with all instructions given by the local and Belgian authorities (see
https://diplomatie.belgium.be/en), in red zone destinations as well as elsewhere.
The Belgian federal government further wishes to sensitise travellers to the fact that new COVID-19 outbreaks abroad can significantly impact their travel plans, and that repatriation cannot be guaranteed if commercial flights are cancelled or borders closed.
At the current time, code red means that travel to a country with this colour code is
strongly discouraged by the Belgian federal government, or that the authorities of the country in question prohibit non-essential travel from Belgium or impose restrictions (testing, quarantine, etc.).
HEALTHCARE - Does my hospitalisation insurance cover medical expenses related to epidemics or pandemics such as coronavirus (COVID-19)?
The treatment must be
curative and fall under the regulatory acceptance by the Belgian Social Security.
If you have taken out
outpatient care insurance for your employees, then all medical expenses outside the hospital are also covered, if they fulfil the above conditions.
HEALTHCARE - Is the cost of screening and testing for coronavirus also reimbursed?
If you took out hospitalisation insurance for your employees through AG Employee Benefits, then the cost of these treatments is
reimbursed if they are an essential part of a curative treatment, that is executed by a legally recognised doctor and falls under the regulatory acceptance by the Belgian Social Security.
Preventive screenings – except for colon cancer – do not fall under these conditions and are therefore
not covered by our insurance policies.
AG's hospital plans do not refund the cost of testing carried out on an outpatient basis.
The National Institute for Health and Disability Insurance (INAMI/RIZIV) will cover the cost of COVID-19 testing according to certain criteria.
Below are the refunds provided by the INAMI/RIZIV for COVID-19 testing:
For a molecular diagnostic test (RT-PCR test): a refund of EUR 46.81
For an antibody test (blood test): a refund of EUR 9.60.
For an antigen test (rapid diagnostic test): a refund of EUR 16.72.
These amounts include all test-related costs: test materials, equipment, reagents, investment costs, quality control, payroll, supervision, protective equipment, transport costs, etc.
HEALTHCARE - What if my employee is put into quarantine because of coronavirus? Is he/she covered by the hospitalisation insurance in that case?
If your employee must spend a certain time in
quarantine because of coronavirus,
without being sick however, these expenses are
not covered by the hospitalisation insurance. The quarantine is preventive and does not involve any hospitalisation. In principle, the cost is borne by the local or Belgian authorities.
If your employee is or becomes sick and he/she must be hospitalised - whether or not in quarantine - , then the hospitalisation insurance will reimburse the hospital expenses.
GUARANTEED INCOME - What if my employee cannot work for a longer period of time due to coronavirus? What about his/her pay?
If your employee is sick and/or unable to work for a longer period of time due to coronavirus, he/she is considered
unfit for work.
During the first month of incapacity, the employer pays the employee’s salary.
Afterwards your employee has recourse to the Belgian National Social Security scheme.
If you took out guaranteed income cover for the employee, AG Employee Benefits will supplement the employee’s pay under the Income Care plan, in addition to the social security contribution.
LIFE/DEATH - What if things do go wrong? Does the Death benefit cover of the group insurance still apply in that case?
In the event of death, the (supplementary) death benefit cover of our occupational benefit plans (supplementary pension second pillar) still applies. The group insurance plans of AG Employee Benefits do not provide for exclusion in the event of death due to a pandemic or epidemic.
If your employee dies due to coronavirus, the death benefit will be paid out to the beneficiary/ies.
Attention: if your employee is sick for a longer period and is no longer paid a salary (incapacity), the premium payments for the group insurance plan are often also stopped after 1 month. In that case, the supplementary death benefit no longer applies unless you took out a Waiver of Premiums benefit for your employees.
Do you have other questions?
Your employee can find a detailed overview of the covers of your insurance plans online in
My Global Benefits.
Do you have a question about the cover of your insurance plans? Besides My Global Benefits, you can always talk to your
usual contact at AG Employee Benefits and/or your broker.
This page will be updated if there are new relevant developments about the coronavirus outbreak.