With the increase in COVID-19 testing availability, the Kittitas County Incident Management Team (IMT) has seen questions regarding insurance cost and coverage for testing related to COVID-19. For general information about Washington State COVID-19 coverage, the IMT recommends the Washington State Insurance Commissioner’s website at https://www.insurance.wa.gov/. At this time, the message is that no one should be paying for a COVID-19 test.

According to the Office of the Insurance Commissioner, the emergency order number 20.01 has been extended to July 3, which provides for the following in relation to testing and treatment:

  • Cover, prior to application of any deductible and with no cost-sharing, the health care provider visit and FDA-authorized COVID-19 testing for enrollees who meet the CDC criteria for testing, as determined by the enrollee’s health care provider.
  • Suspend any prior authorization requirements that apply to covered diagnostic testing and treatment of COVID-19.

Testing is also covered under Apple Health (Medicaid) and Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance) as well.  Medicare Advantage Plans can’t charge copayments, deductibles, or coinsurance for clinical lab tests to detect or diagnose COVID-19.  https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19-tests.

If you do not have insurance that would cover the expense, you can apply for free or low-cost insurance through the Washington Healthplanfinder.  Some agencies assist patients in accessing health insurance and for those who cannot access insurance may be able to access charity care.

If you have insurance and you receive a bill for a COVID-19 test, you should contact your insurance carrier directly.  Some people have received bills for COVID-19 tests, because of a deductible being applied, which is inaccurate because of the emergency order 20.01.

If you have questions about accessing health insurance through the Washington Healthplanfinder, call the Kittitas County Public Health Department and ask for an Insurance Navigator at 509-962-7515. If you have questions about your health, please contact your healthcare provider or you can call the Temporary COVID Clinic at KVH at 509-933-8850.  If you are having a medical emergency, call 911 or go to the Emergency Department at KVH.  If you have general questions about COVID-19, please call the EOC at 509-933-8315 or 509-933-8305.

Kittitas County, from the Cascades to the Columbia, and online at http://www.co.kittitas.wa.us