The program is part of the Biden administration’s efforts to increase access to testing around the United States. People can also receive four free home tests per day. residential address through the federal website, covidtests.gov.
Most Americans with private insurance can buy home tests online or in stores and get them paid at the time of purchase or get it refunded by filing a claim with their insurance company. So be sure to save your receipts.
The tests will not be subject to deductibles or deductibles.
Insurance companies can set up a network of favorite stores, pharmacies and online retailers where consumers can receive tests at no cost in advance. People could still buy tests outside that network, but the insurance companies only had to refund up to $ 12 for each one.
Consumers should contact their insurance companies to find out if they provide direct coverage or if claims need to be filed.
Men UnitedHealthcare, Humana, Health Care Service Corp. (which runs several major Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans) and three other major carriers allow enrollees to purchase quick tests at an in-network or preferred pharmacy and not pay in advance, Kaiser found. Most of these insurers also allow their policyholders to seek reimbursement if they purchase tests outside the preferred network.
Do I need a doctor’s order or prescription?
No, you do not need to visit a doctor to get the free tests.
How many tests can I get?
Insurance companies must pay for up to eight tests per. covered person per. month. So a family of four could e.g. get 32 tests every month.
What about all the tests I bought before January 15th? Can I get them refunded?
Sorry, but only tests purchased from January 15th qualify.
Where can I Find a Home Test?
This is one of the reasons why the Biden administration is also distributing 1 billion free home tests.
Several states have also ordered home tests to be distributed free of charge to residents, but supplies have been limited.
How do I get one of the free federal tests?
The U.S. Postal Service will begin shipping the tests in late January, according to the website. The tests must be sent within seven to 12 days, the White House has said.
Those who are unable to access the site or need further assistance in placing an order can call 800-232-0233, according to a FAQ section at covidtests.gov.
What if I’m on Medicare?
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services are investigating ways to extend reimbursement to Medicare enrollees, according to a senior CMS official. Over-the-counter tests have not been covered by traditional Medicare before, so the agency is looking at how it can add a new payment program, said the official, who did not provide a timeline for a decision.
Meanwhile, Medicare covers free Covid-19 tests performed in a laboratory by order of a physician.
Those who are enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans should check with their insurance companies to see if the cost of the home tests will be covered.
Seniors and people with disabilities can order free home tests from the federal government.
What if I’m on Medicaid?
Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program, known as CHIP, already cover home testing without cost sharing.
However, enrollees should contact their government agencies for specific coverage details.
What if I’m uninsured?
The uninsured can get free home tests from certain local health centers. They can also request tests through the federal program.
In addition, the Department of Health and Human Services provides up to 50 million free home tests to local health centers and Medicare-certified health clinics for distribution to patients and the community.
HHS has also established more than 10,000 free community-based pharmacy test sites around the country.
This story has been updated with further details on Friday.
CNN’s Maegan Vazquez contributed to this report.