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How the Large Insurers are Covering COVID-19

Insurers are offering free telehealth and waiving treatment and testing costs connected to coronavirus.
Doctor and patient iStock

The major insurance carriers in North Texas are waiving costs associated with COVID-19 testing and treatment, offering telemedicine options, and taking other measures to reduce costs during the coronavirus pandemic, though all at different levels. 

Cigna has waived customer cost-sharing for any COVID-19 testing and treatment through May 31 and has deployed its own doctors and nurse practitioners to support the medical community. It is also offering a free COVID-19 risk assessment tool. The company will reimburse providers at the in-network or Medicare rates as previously arranged.

“Our customers with COVID-19 should focus on fighting this virus and preventing its spread,” said David M. Cordani, president and chief executive officer of Cigna via release. “While our customers focus on regaining their health, we have their backs. Our teams of experts are working around the clock to support front line heath care workers, increase flexibility for hospitals, and deliver greater peace of mind to those we serve.” 

Texas Health Aetna will also have free copays for diagnostic testing and doctor visits related to COVID-19, free telemedicine to check symptoms with a local emergency room physician. 

 UnitedHealthcare is also waiving cost-sharing for the treatment and telehealth visits for COVID-19 through May 31 for its fully-insured Commercial, Medicare Advantage and Medicaid plans, and says it will work with self-funded customers to implement a similar approach.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas members won’t pay copays, deductibles or coinsurance for medically necessary lab tests to diagnose, test, or treat  COVID-19 if it is medically necessary. It includes in-network facilities and out-of-network emergencies for fully-insured employer-based plans, individual and family plans, Medicare (excluding Part D), Medicare Supplement, and Medicaid.