Medicare now covers many tests and treatments for those suffering from Coronavirus, (COVID-19).
The number of cases continues to climb in the United States, and therefore Medicare is giving access to testing and treatment for older adults. The fact is that seniors are most at risk for severe illness caused by coronavirus.
According to Seema Verma, administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Medicare beneficiaries will not have to pay out-of-pocket costs associated with coronavirus testing. Moreover, many Americans with private insurance will also get relief from cost sharing for services associated with the this virus
In addition, more adults with Medicare now also have the option to connect with their doctor through telehealth technologies. this is a tremendous development as it minimizes exposure to people who may have the virus.
Medicare Covers: Don’t Be Shy, Call Your Doctor
Public health experts are encouraging people experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 — fever, cough and shortness of breath — to call their health care provider before seeking care in person. This avoids spreading germs to others. Health experts believe that telehealth, including virtual visits and video check-ins, is a better way to deter the virus from spreading in health care settings. This is especially true for high-risk individuals such as older adults and people with underlying health conditions.
Medicare covers in-person doctors’ visits and hospital stays. And while there currently is no vaccine for COVID-19, Medicare will cover it under Part D when it’s available.
Government leaders met with several leading health insurers this week to discuss costs for care related to COVID-19. CMS then issued a statement outlining accommodations Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D beneficiaries can expect. The new guidelines will speed up access to prevention and treatment. These include:
- Waiving cost-sharing for COVID-19 tests
- Waiving cost-sharing for COVID-19 treatments in doctor’s offices or emergency rooms and services delivered via telehealth
- Removing prior authorizations requirements
- Waiving prescription refill limits
- Relaxing restrictions on home or mail delivery of prescription drugs
- Expanding access to certain telehealth services
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