UNSMIS position on COVID-19 Vaccines and Tests
- The Executive Committe of UNSMIS has agreed to reimburse COVID vaccines at 100%
- No monetary limit will be applied to the cost of the vaccine, although UNSMIS reserves the right, as with all medical expenses, to query and refuse invoices that significantly exceed reasonable and customary expenses for a given type of treatment/medication in a given country.
- The reimbursement is limited to maximum two doses for the time being. This is is subject to review if necessary depending on the degree and duration of the immunity of the new vaccines, which is currently unknown. Any future revision of this will be based on the official position taken by the World Health Organization.
- The requirement for a prescription may be waived in cases where the vaccine is administered by health care providers licensed and authorized to do so by the local health authorities.
- The Covid19 test is administered by trained staff, so reimbursement should follow normal UNSMIS procedures/standards: i.e. the test must be administered by a physician or by a lab or by a pharmacy with a valid prescription (< 72h).
- UNSMIS believes a monetary cap may become a barrier to testing. As such, for the time being, in the interests of all staff/former staff UNSMIS is not applying a monetary ceiling to the test. UNSMIS reserves the right to review this as the situation evolves.
- Reimbursement will be at 80%
- The requirement for a medical prescription may be waived in the event written proof can be submitted that the test was requested by a competent authority, for example for the purpose of contact tracing. In some countries, like Switzerland, the invoice issued by the Hospital will specify that the test was done in compliance with local health policies.
- Tests requested by a country and/or airline for personal travel purposes are not reimbursable.
- Self-tests are not reimbursed.
- Covered in accordance with UNSMIS regulations in the event of hospitalization. Private room costs, normally not covered, may be covered as indicated in the following point.
- (i) for isolation: applies to people that show symptoms and need to be diagnosed and/or treated. These patients are being hospitalised in isolation or in a single room in order not to contaminate others. This is medical care and therefore covered, even the private room supplement, at 90% as per UNSMIS internal rules with application of the Supplementary Plan.
- (ii) for prevention: applies to people that may or may not have been diagnosed with COVID-19 but do not show symptoms and are being quarantined for preventive measures. This is not medical care and therefore not covered.
The current Coronavirus outbreak has been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) and many countries have declared a state of emergency. Many commercial insurers often apply Pandemic/Epidemic exclusion clauses preventing certain insurance payouts in such circumstances. Please rest assured that UNSMIS has no such exclusion and that it will continue honouring all reimbursements for eligible medical expenses.
Below are examples of questions and answers:
- Q: Can I claim reimbursement of Covid-19 tests required for business travel, including Rest and Recuperation travel?
A: UNSMIS does not reimburse Covid-19 tests performed as a requirement for statutory travel. We recommend you liaise with your HR focal point.
- Q: Can I claim reimbursement of Covid-19 tests required for private (including home leave travel) international travel?
A: No. Covid-19 tests performed as a pre-requirement for private travel to a country where the national authorities require a negative Covid-19 test result to enter the country are not reimbursable by UNSMIS.
- Q: I am planning to take my family to an amusement park. Our family physician has prescribed Covid-19 tests required by the amusement park to be performed before entry. Are these tests reimbursable by UNSMIS?
A: No. Covid-19 tests performed for the purpose of entering an amusement park, or for any other leisure activity, are not reimbursable by UNSMIS, even if prescribed by a physician.
- Q: I need to provide a negative Covid-19 test result to visit my parent in a care home. Will a renewable prescription from my treating physician allow for reimbursement of the tests by UNSMIS?
A: No. Covid-19 tests undertaken to visit care homes (or any health facilities) are not reimbursable, even when prescribed by a physician. Furthermore, Covid-19 tests prescribed by a treating physician under a renewable prescription to test regularly over a period of time are not reimbursable by UNSMIS.
- Q: I need to regularly provide a negative Covid-19 test result to attend the gym. Will a renewable prescription from my treating physician allow for reimbursement of the tests by UNSMIS?
A: No. Covid-19 tests performed for the purpose of leisure activities are not reimbursable by UNSMIS, even if prescribed by a physician. Furthermore, Covid-19 tests prescribed by a treating physician under a renewable prescription to test regularly over a period are not reimbursable by UNSMIS.
- Q: My child attends a school where one of the students has tested positive for Covid-19. The school is asking all students to provide a negative Covid-19 test result to be able to return to school. Will this be reimbursed by UNSMIS?
A: Yes, antigen and PCR tests requested by the school in writing are reimbursable by UNSMIS (upon presentation of the official request). However, self-tests are non-refundable.
- Q: I am required to attend a work meeting at an external venue where the results of a negative Covid-19 test are required to attend. Will UNSMIS reimburse the cost of the test?
A: No. Covid-19 tests performed to attend work meetings are not reimbursable by UNSMIS. Please contact your employer
- Q: Our team will be holding a meeting where a group lunch has been organized at a local restaurant. Will UNSMIS reimburse the cost of a Covid-19 test required to allow me to attend this event?
A: No. Covid-19 tests performed to enter a café or restaurant where a negative Covid-19 test is required, even if to attend a business lunch, are not reimbursable by UNSMIS.
- Q: Due to feeling unwell, I underwent a Covid-19 test and tested positive. However, I did not have a prescription for the test. Will the cost of the test be reimbursed by UNSMIS?
A: No. Covid-19 tests performed without a prescription, even when the result of the test is positive, are not reimbursable by UNSMIS.
- Q: Due to feeling unwell, I underwent a Covid-19 test and tested positive. However, I was only able to obtain a prescription from my Docteur after the test was completed. Will the cost of the test be reimbursed by UNSMIS?
A: No. The Covid-19 test is not reimbursable by UNSMIS. UNSMIS requires prescriptions to be established prior to the date of tests for the tests to be reimbursable.
- Q: I am soon to have a planned surgery and the hospital is requesting a negative Covid-19 test result as a pre-requirement for admission to undergo the surgery. Will the cost of the test be reimbursed by UNSMIS?
A: Provided the hospital issues a prescription for the Covid-19 test prior to the test being performed and confirms that it is a pre-requirement for admission, the cost of the test is reimbursable by UNSMIS.