May 18, 2020
Gov. Wolf: Federal Funding
Available for COVID-19 Testing and Treatment for Uninsured Patients
Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf announced
today that through the federal stimulus bills providers of COVID-19 testing
and treatment services will be able to be reimbursed for providing those
services to uninsured patients.
should have access to necessary testing for COVID-19 and this federal
funding will help eliminate any financial burden on those both providing
and receiving tests,” Gov. Wolf said.
The Department of Human
Services (DHS) also reminded Pennsylvanians of the continued availability
of health coverage through the state’s Medicaid program, known as Medical
Assistance (MA), or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
“We are also pleased to
work with the federal government to ensure that people who are uninsured
can receive COVID-19 testing and treatment without worrying about how to
pay for it. No Pennsylvanian should forego medically-necessary testing for
fear of what it might cost, and providers will be able to collect payment
for testing and services directly from the federal government,” said DHS
Secretary Teresa Miller. “Affordable health care and access to it is a
necessity at all times, but it is especially vital during a health crisis.
DHS is always working to make sure that people who need coverage to protect
themselves and their children have it. I encourage anyone who may need
coverage to apply for Medicaid or CHIP.”
As part of the Family
First Coronavirus Relief Act and CARES Act, the U.S. Department of Health
and Human Services will provide reimbursement to health care providers
generally at Medicare rates for testing uninsured individuals for COVID-19
and treating uninsured individuals with a COVID-19 diagnosis. Payments for
uninsured individuals will be administered through the Health Resources
& Services Administration (HRSA).
HRSA is accepting claims
as of May 6 and will accept claims for services dating back to February 4,
2020. Providers should access the HRSA website at https://coviduninsuredclaim.linkhealth.com/ to learn what services are
covered, determine who is eligible, submit claims, and find more
COVID-19 testing is
mandatory coverage for individual and marketplace insurance, Medicare,
Medicaid, and CHIP. Pennsylvanians can apply online for both Medicaid and
CHIP at www.compass.state.pa.us. Medicaid and CHIP enroll
individuals throughout the year and do not have a limited or special
enrollment time, so people needing health coverage can apply for these
programs at any time. There are income limits for Medicaid, but no income
limits for children to qualify for coverage through CHIP.
"The Affordable Care
Act has ensured that we have health insurance options available, even if
people lose the coverage they currently have," Insurance Commissioner
Jessica Altman said. "Individuals and families can sign-up for health
coverage through the marketplace at healthcare.gov, outside of the annual open
enrollment period, if they experience a life change that qualifies them
from a Special Enrollment Period. These circumstances include the loss of
health insurance provided by an employer, which many individuals may
experience during the COVID-19 outbreak. There are several resources
available for displaced employees during this difficult time, so I
encourage those affected to reach out for guidance and assistance."
Association of Community Health Centers (PACHC) offers free, personal, no
pressure, no obligation, non-biased enrollment assistance. PACHC and its
network of Community Health Centers are available to assist you in
navigating and enrolling in the Health Insurance Marketplace, Medical
Assistance (MA), Medicare and CHIP. Certified Exchange Assisters are
available throughout Pennsylvania to help residents enroll in these
Pennsylvanians can find
exchange assisters in their area here. Individuals can also search by
using the find a health center
with additional questions or in need of further assistance can contact the
PACHC's Navigator Hub at 1-866-944-CARE (2273).
Visit pa.gov for a “Responding to
or the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s dedicated Coronavirus webpage for the most up-to-date
information regarding COVID-19.
Guidance to DHS providers
related to COVID-19 is available here.
Erin James, email@example.com