MORRISVILLE, NC—Policy Reporter, a TrialCard-owned medical policy tracking platform for physicians, health plans, laboratories, and product manufacturers, has over the past week alerted its clients to dozens of new and updated payer policies related to the COVID-19 virus. Many of these new policies include the elimination of patient cost-sharing expense for COVID-19 testing, in line with the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which requires most health plans to cover testing at no cost to the plan member. Due to stay-at-home and self-quarantine mandates, many health plans are also adopting significant changes to their rules for covering telehealth services, including waiving patient cost-sharing expense and expanding access to these services.
“Policy Reporter is seeing more commercial health plans cover telehealth services at no cost to the plan member,” says Scott Dulitz, Chief Strategy Officer at TrialCard. “Many smaller regional plans are following the lead of large national plans that have announced their intent to cover telehealth services in this manner. This includes all Blue Cross Blue Shield plans as well as Aetna, Anthem, and Humana. Combined, these plans represent more than 165 million covered lives. In addition, Aetna just announced that plan member costs for in-network hospital stays related to COVID-19 treatment will be waived through June 1 for at least 3.6 million of their members.”