Departments Issue More Guidance Addressing Coverage of Over-the-Counter COVID-19 Tests
February 8, 2022
On December 2, 2021, the Biden Administration announced a nine-point plan to help combat the emergence of the Omicron variant. One feature of the nine-point plan is increased access to at-home tests through funding by private insurers. On February 4, 2022, more details were released via an FAQ published by the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and the Treasury.
Per the FAQ, OTC COVID tests must be covered by plans and issuers, including tests obtained without any contact with a medical care provider. No further cost-sharing requirements are permitted, such as deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance. However, coverage does not need to cover the cost of tests directly to the point of purchase and may instead create a reimbursement program. Per the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and the Treasury, plans, and issuers are encouraged to provide direct coverage for a COVID test.