HHS Makes Available OTC COVID-19 Tests to Medicare Beneficiaries

This week, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that more than 59 million Americans with Medicare Part B, including those enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan, now have access to over-the-counter (OTC) COVID-19 tests approved or authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) at no cost. Persons with Medicare can receive up to eight tests per calendar month from participating pharmacies or health care providers for the duration of the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE).

According to HHS, this is the first time that Medicare has covered an OTC self-administered test at no cost to beneficiaries. The new initiative enables payment from Medicare directly to participating eligible pharmacies and other health care providers to allow Medicare beneficiaries to receive tests at no cost, in addition to the two sets of four free at-home COVID-19 tests Americans can continue to order from covidtests.gov. National pharmacy chains participating in the initiative including Albertson’s, Costco Pharmacy, CVS, Food Lion, Giant Food, The Giant Company, Hannaford Pharmacies, H-E-B Pharmacy, Hy-Vee Pharmacy, Kroger Family of Pharmacies, Rite Aid Corp., Shop & Stop, Walgreens, and Walmart.

Additional information is available here.