Amid the growing concerns about the spread of the COVID-19 in communities across the country, Anthem, Inc., announced today its efforts to eliminate the burden of additional costs for members in its affiliated health plans by providing coverage of the coronavirus screening test at no out-of-pocket-cost. The companies also confirm that prior authorization is not required for diagnostic services related to COVID-19 testing.
“We are committed to keeping healthcare affordable for the consumers we serve. While the CDC continues to advise that the risk for the virus remains low, we are mindful of our responsibility to our health plan consumers and communities to ensure access to care,” said Anthem President and CEO Gail K. Boudreaux. “These actions today should reduce barriers to seeing a doctor, getting tested and maintaining adherence to medications for long-term health issues.”
Testing similar to what is offered now from the Centers for Disease Control will soon be offered more broadly. Anthem’s waiver of copays, coinsurance and deductibles and prior authorization will extend to this focused test used to diagnose COVID-19 for all of Anthem’s affiliated health plan fully-insured, individual, Medicaid and Medicare members when medically necessary.
Anthem also recommends members use telehealth when possible, as it can help prevent them from spreading a virus further within a physical clinical setting. Anthem’s telehealth provider, LiveHealth Online, is a safe and effective way for members to see a doctor to receive health guidance related to COVID-19 from their homes via smart phone, tablet or computer-enabled web cam. LiveHealth Online is offered as a health plan benefit to many individual, employer-sponsored and Medicaid and Medicare members. It is also available as a cost effective option to all consumers.
As there is a heightened awareness of COVID-19 and more cases are diagnosed in the United States, LiveHealth Online is increasing physician availability to handle a potential increase in patients, while maintaining reasonable wait times.
Anthem is also encouraging its health plan members who have a pharmacy plan that includes a 90-day benefit, to talk to their doctor about whether changing from a 30-day supply to a 90-day supply of any prescription medicines they take on a regular basis is appropriate. Members filling 90-day prescriptions can obtain their medications through our home delivery pharmacy and, in some circumstances, select retail pharmacies. Preparing with a longer supply could help to avoid any potential issues with localized shortages. Members can call the pharmacy services number on the back of their health plan ID card to learn more.
About Anthem, Inc.
Anthem is a leading health benefits company dedicated to improving lives and communities, and making healthcare simpler. Through its affiliated companies, Anthem serves more than 79 million people, including 41 million within its family of health plans. We aim to be the most innovative, valuable and inclusive partner. For more information, please visit www.antheminc.com or follow @AnthemInc on Twitter.
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Jill Becher, 414-234-1573
Source: Anthem, Inc.