The Florida Workers’ Comp Division says workers’ comp claims relating to COVID-19 more than doubled in July when compared to June. The agency has been tracking claims for income replacement since the pandemic began.

A report released on Monday revealed that 1 454 claims were reported in July, an increase from the 634 reported in June and the 773 recorded in May for Florida workers’ comp claims. This is in keeping with an increase in COVID cases across the state.

The report said indemnity or income replacement claims reached a peak of 8,403 claims in July 2020.

Floridian employers have paid out $49 million in COVID-19 compensation claims with each claim averaging $3 040, the report said.

Meanwhile, experts say long COVID is likely to have an effect on the acceptance and management of workers’ compensation claims as well as the awarding of disability benefits in the future.

Senior division executive for the Boca Raton-based National Council on Compensation Insurance, Jeff Eddinger, said most claims don’t include medical costs. They only cover lost wages for the period during which the worker is recovering.

The NCCI said there were more than 45,000 claims from workers affected by COVID-19 in 2020 and 95 percent of the claims cost less than $10,000.

However, chief clinical officer for myMatrixx, Phil Walls, said the industry was only now starting to understand the long-term impact that COVID has on many people.

He said people with COVID may incur costs well in excess of hospitalization and the initial treatment.

Some individuals with severe post-COVID symptoms may need treatment for the rest of their lives while some may be deemed disabled.

If you’ve been diagnosed with COVID-19and you want to ensure you’re treated fairly by the workers’ comp system, contact the Florida workers’ compensation attorneys at Work Injury Lawyers today!