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Most COVID-19 comp claims in health care, first responders

By Louise Esola

Health care workers and those working in protective services accounted for 83.3% of COVID-19 indemnity workers compensation claims filed in Florida as of May 31, according to a report issued Tuesday by the Florida Department of Financial Services, Division of Workers’ Compensation.

The report tallied 3,807 time-off, virus-related claims filed since the start of the pandemic, totaling $3.2 million in benefits paid. It found that that 45.7% of claims came from health care workers and 37.6% from the protective services sector, which includes first responders.

Service industry workers represented 9.1% of claims, office workers 6.1%, and airline workers 1.5%.

Self-insured governments paid the largest amount at $1.8 million. Private insurers paid $856,484, according to the report.

COVID-19 claims accounted for 2.9% of total paid workers compensation benefits in Florida from the start of the pandemic through May 31.

The report said there were 1,718  claims denials — 1,695 total denials and 23 partial denials. Nineteen of the claim denials were in the health care space, according to the report.

March saw the most claims, with 1,949 filed. The figures tapered down to 300 claims in May.

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