Hey, look, another thing that might keep people from getting tested.

Courtesy of NYT:

For months, Americans have been told not to worry about the costs of coronavirus tests, which are crucial to stopping the pandemic’s spread. “It is critical that Americans have peace of mind knowing that cost won’t be a barrier to testing during this national public health emergency,” Medicare’s administrator, Seema Verma, said in April.

Congress passed laws requiring insurers to pay for tests, and the Trump administration created a program to cover the bills of the uninsured. Cities and states set up no-cost testing sites.

Patients, whether with or without insurance, are beginning to find holes in those new coverage programs. Nationwide, people have been hit with unexpected fees and denied claims related to coronavirus tests, according to dozens of bills that The New York Times has reviewed. Insurers have told these patients they could owe from a few dollars to thousands.

These patients responded to a Times request for medical bills related to coronavirus testing and treatment, allowing us to identify previously unreported patterns in medical billing.

They are not alone. About 2.4 percent of coronavirus tests billed to insurers leave the patient responsible for some portion of payment, according to the health data firm Castlight. With 77 million tests performed so far, it could add up to hundreds of thousands of Americans who receive unexpected bills.

This is short-sighted bullshit. 

If things like the fear of receiving a huge bill discourage people from getting tested that means there will be fewer tests done and the virus will be allowed to spread even more. 

Ultimately that means more health care costs across the board and more money being paid out by these insurance companies to cover those medical expenses. 

Therefore you would think that either the medical providers would not charge for the test in the first place or that the insurance companies would be clamoring to pay for the tests.