It's time for Governor Abbott to take action on COVID-19 testing.
On March 18, 2020, the President expanded access to COVID-19 testing by signing the Families First Coronavirus Response Act into law. Through important provisions that require both public and private insurance to eliminate out-of-pocket costs for COVID-19 and testing-related services, the new law minimizes financial barriers to testing and prompts Governor Abbott to ensure that state-regulated plans are held to the same high standard of coverage of testing.
Anne Dunkelberg CPPP Assoc. Director, Program Director, Health & Wellness
The new law marks an important step toward an optimal public health response to COVID-19.
But it is crucial that the Governor’s administration fill remaining gaps to protect the health of our entire state.
For the new law to remove all financial barriers to testing in Texas, Governor Abbott must take further steps to respond to COVID-19 at a state level. These additional steps include:
accepting an increase in our federal Medicaid matching funds;
opting into a temporary 100% federally-funded free COVID-19 testing program administered through Medicaid;
opting into and implementing a separate 100% federally-funded pool to guarantee free testing for non-citizens; and
requiring that some bare-bones and non-insurance coverage, excluded from the new federal law that requires testing coverage, immediately inform their customers of any testing out-of-pocket costs and provide them with information on how to access free testing for the uninsured. For more details on how Governor Abbott can guarantee that all Texans have access to testing, read our new policy brief.
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