OK. The US government announces that the cost of test kits for the coronavirus will be covered by the government. So there’s no cost to find out if you have treatment. Isn’t that great?
However, if the test comes back positive, what about treatment? Not so much.
There are several possibilities:
- You’re older and on Medicaid and Medicare: No problem, you’re covered. You should know about Dual Eligible Supplement Plans for which you qualify.
- You’re older and on Original Medicare: You may get hit with deductibles and copays that you may not be able to afford. Good luck.
- You’re younger and have a high deductible plan, catastrophic insurance only, or no insurance: you’re probably going to get sick in a minor way and survive without treatment. Be careful who you expose to the disease.
- You’re younger and small kids, and a high deductible or catastrophic plan or no insurance: You probably will be OK but your kids will be at high risk. If you in a state that has maintained health plans for children, you’ll be in better shape, but there aren’t many of those, especially in the South.
One hospital system in NJ, for which there is no statewide declaration of emergency as yet, has put a policy in place that staff who have young kids or have direct contact with the elderly must wear masks covering nose and mouth. That’s a sensible policy, for it is persons over 50 and the very young who are most at risk from this coronavirus. Among the over-50 group, the risk rises with age.
The four US states declaring state-wide health emergencies as of last night are California, Florida, Maryland and Washington. At least 26 US states have known cases of the virus.