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The White House says the 150 million Americans Individuals with private health insurance are eligible for full reimbursement after purchasing a home Covid test. This includes people who are insured with their employer as well as those who bought a plan on the Affordable Care Act marketplace, Dawson said.
The new rules do not apply to Medicaid and Medicare policyholders, although this may change, and Medicare policyholders with private insurance may be covered.
Short-term plans or health-care sharing plans usually don’t have to cover your tests, said Sabrina Corlette, Co-director of the Center on Health Insurance Reforms at the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University.
Covid tests at home are also possible a refundable expense for flexible savings accounts and health savings accounts.
Experts said we will have to wait for further instructions from the government to know what is covered, but they expect most of the home tests available in pharmacies to be included in the policy.
You probably still have some work to do to get the money back, Dawson said.
Many people may not even be familiar with their provider’s refund policy. (You can start learning about this by reaching out to your plan.)
It will be important that you keep your receipt, said Caitlin Donovan, a spokeswoman for the Patient Advocate Foundation
“Your normal receipt should be fine – I even printed out receipts from Amazon – and then you’d have to send it in,” Donovan said, adding that insurers usually have a reimbursement form that you want to fill out.
“Insurers usually have a physical mailing address,” she said. “They may also have an option for electronic submission, which means you can upload them to their website or email them.”
To send a simpler receipt, Donovan recommends asking the cashier to call the tests separately from further purchases.
Corlette hopes government guidelines in January will require insurers to reimburse people for bills within a certain timeframe.
“It can take some companies a long time to cut these checks,” Corlette said.
If you don’t have insurance or are covered by Medicaid and Medicare, the White House doubles the number of free tests it distributes in community centers from 25 million to 50 million.
You should be able to find one of these centers on your state or local health agency website, Corlette said.
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Dawson mentioned some of the most common circumstances people might want to test for the virus: They have come into contact with someone who has been diagnosed with Covid, they show symptoms of the virus, or they are expected to participate in a risk event, such as a large family gathering or a meeting with an immunocompromised person.
Most take-away tests bought at your local Walgreens, for example, don’t provide results for you to use before a flight or cruise. However, there is at least one home test that the CDC has approved for travel purposes. according to the travel site The Points Guy.