Insurance companies must cover the costs of home COVID-19 tests from Saturday

From Saturday, health insurance plans will have to cover the cost of at-home COVID-19 testing, but how will the process work? Even for businesses, the answers are still unclear – and the process is still being worked out. We asked several insurance companies in Massachusetts, and they told WCVB’s Ben Simmoneau that they were scrambling a bit to prepare for the term that begins Saturday, January 15. The Biden administration, despite announcing the new term in early December, did not release the guidelines for insurance companies until last Monday. From Saturday, anyone with private health insurance can be reimbursed for up to 8 at-home COVID-19 tests per month. For example, a family of four covered by private insurance would be eligible for up to 32 tests per month. Most COVID-19 tests that can be purchased at retail stores contain two tests. Save your COVID-19 test purchase receipts. At this time, you will need to submit a claim for reimbursement after your purchase. tests. Insurance companies are still figuring out the best system to do this. Massachusetts’ Blue Cross Blue Shield told Simmoneau it will have a form on its website by Saturday. Tufts and Harvard Pilgrim say they will have a form on their website by Wednesday. Refunds only apply to at-home COVID-19 tests you purchase from Saturday, January 15, 2022 and onwards. You cannot get coverage for tests you have already purchased. Ideally, the White House wants insurance companies to find a way to make these tests available for free in advance, such as partnering with a retailer, so it’s as easy as going to the pharmacy counter, by showing your insurance card and going out with tests. If they do, they can cap reimbursement for tests you purchase at $12 per test. It doesn’t appear that any company has this system ready to go, including Aetna, which is owned by CVS.

From Saturday, health insurance plans will have to cover the cost of at-home COVID-19 testing, but how will the process work?

Even for businesses, the answers are still unclear – and the process is still being worked out.

We asked several insurance companies in Massachusetts, and they told WCVB’s Ben Simmoneau that they were scrambling a bit to prepare for the term that begins Saturday, January 15.

The Biden administration, despite announcing the new term in early December, did not release the guidelines for insurance companies until last Monday.

From Saturday, anyone with private health insurance can be reimbursed for up to 8 at-home COVID-19 tests per month.

For example, a family of four covered by private insurance would be eligible for up to 32 tests per month.

Most COVID-19 tests that can be purchased at retail stores contain two tests.

Save your COVID-19 test purchase receipts

At this time, you will need to submit a claim for reimbursement after purchasing tests.

Insurance companies are still figuring out the best system to do this.

Massachusetts’ Blue Cross Blue Shield told Simmoneau it will have a form on its website by Saturday.

Tufts and Harvard Pilgrim say they will have a form on their website by Wednesday.

Refunds only apply to at-home COVID-19 tests you purchase from Saturday, January 15, 2022 and onwards.

You cannot get coverage for tests you have already purchased.

Ideally, the White House wants insurance companies to find a way to make these tests available for free in advance, such as partnering with a retailer so it’s as easy as going to the pharmacy counter, showing your insurance card and get out with some tests.

If they do, they can cap reimbursement for tests you purchase at $12 per test.

It doesn’t appear that any company has this system ready to go, including Aetna, which is owned by CVS.

Kristan F. Talley