It’s been over a year since the first announcement of the COVID-19 pandemic. Since then, we’ve come a long way and finally have a vaccine. Still, many have COVID-related questions of insurance coverage, cost, and recommendations.
To answer some of your COVID-related questions, we’ve sat down with our benefits expert. Here’s what they had to say :
Q: Is COVID testing free?
A: Certain health centers and pharmacies provide COVID testing for free, even if the patient doesn’t have insurance coverage. This expense is government sponsored by The Families First Coronavirus Response Act. However, if tested at an urgent care center or doctor’s office, patients may be billed. Billed services may include the initial COVID test, if it’s a rapid test, if the facility is out of network or if other health services outside of the initial test take place. Overall, if you do not use government sponsored programs, it’s important to understand what your insurance carrier will cover.
Q: Will insurance cover COVID treatment?
A: According to the CDC, COVID treatments may consist of hospitalization and if any complications arise to the patient, urgent care. This would include supplemental oxygen and organ support. Regarding insurance coverage and treatment, make sure to check your plan documents as treatment may not be covered in full. Many COVID patients can recover without treatment, but more serious cases require treatment.
Q: What is the cost of the COVID vaccine?
A: Under The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the federal government has issued the vaccine to be free of charge to those living in the United States. Despite the status of health insurance or immigration, patients will not be denied. However, if the patient receives multiple services during the vaccination appointment, insurance may be billed accordingly.
Q: Should everyone get the COVID vaccine now?
A: Since there is currently a limited supply, the CDC recommends certain groups to partake in the vaccine first. Their recommended group consists of essential workers who mostly work with the public and those over the age of 75 years. The next group would consist of those between the ages of 65-74 years who are at a higher risk of hospitalization, those who are between the ages of 16-64 years with underlying medical conditions, and other essential workers who work with the public, but not as frequent. Regardless of these recommendations, it is up to the patient if they want to have the vaccine administered. It won’t be long before the vaccine is more readily available to the general public, so consider if you’d like to receive it.
Q: Why should people get the COVID vaccine?
A: As mentioned in our previous article on preventive health the best way to protect yourself from a disease is by getting a vaccine. Compared to those who haven’t gotten the vaccine, if you do contract the disease, symptoms lessen. If you’re an employer considering mandating the vaccine for your employees, there are things you will want to consider before doing so.
Over the past year, we’ve continuously learned how to adapt to COVID and take proper measures to ensure the health and safety of all. It’s important to ask COVID-related questions. By staying up to date with the federal government, your insurance provider, and taking precautions to make you feel healthy and safe, you’ll be one step ahead of COVID.