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Can you still get free COVID tests? Here's what we found

A viewer asked us to verify if at-home tests are still free.

ATLANTA — COVID cases are dropping nationwide leading an 11Alive viewer to ask what that means for free COVID tests.

In January of 2022, the Biden Administration announced that Americans with insurance could get up to eight free COVID tests a month. The President ended the nation’s COVID-19 Public Health Emergency in April. The worldwide Public Health Emergency will expire May 11th.

11Alive viewer Marlena Long emailed us after seeing commercials claiming Medicare recipients can still receive up to eight FREE COVID tests.


Can you still receive free COVID tests?



This is true.

Yes, insurance companies including Medicaid continue to pay for free at-home COVID tests but that will likely change for many of us in just a few days. 

What we found

Cubanski and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services confirm you can still get those free tests whether you’re covered by private insurance or Medicaid.

However, all of that will likely change on May 11 when the COVID Public Health Emergency is scheduled to expire.

“People with Medicare will no longer have access to free at home testing,” said Cubanski. “This is particularly true for people in traditional Medicare. Those in Medicare who are enrolled in the private Medicare Advantage plans may continue to have coverage of at-home COVID tests but it will vary from one plan to another.”

The Department of Labor is encouraging private insurance companies to continue paying for at-home COVID tests after May 11 but confirms those companies will no longer be required to pay for them.

Cubanski added that if your doctor orders a test at a lab your private insurance company will likely continue to cover it.


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