March 7, 2020 LANSING, MI (AMN) – Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced today that the Michigan Medicaid Program will waive copays and cost-sharing for testing and health care treatment related to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). A number of insurers, including Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Blue Care Network of Michigan, Priority Health, CVS Health, McLaren, and Meridian also announced they will fully cover the cost of medically-necessary COVID-19 tests for members.
“So far we have no confirmed cases of coronavirus in Michigan, however we must take steps to ensure every Michigander has access to the care they need to combat the spread of this disease,” said Governor Whitmer. “That’s why the State of Michigan is stepping up by waiving fees for testing and treatment associated with coronavirus. I also want to applaud the leadership of insurers like Blue Cross Blue Shield, Priority Health, CVS Health, McLaren, and Meridian for waiving copays and deductibles for coronavirus testing. I strongly encourage all health insurers in Michigan to follow suit to help protect public health and protect families’ pocketbooks.”
Earlier this week, Governor Whitmer announced the creation of four task forces to combat the spread of coronavirus and assess the impact it may have on Michiganders’ day-to-day lives. These include task forces focused on state operations; health and human services; education; and the economy and workforce.
Yesterday, the Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Bureau of Laboratories announced it has increased its testing supplies to test more than 300 Michiganders for the virus, more than doubling its previous testing capacity.
Michigan currently has no known cases of the disease. For the general American public, who are unlikely to be exposed to this virus at this time, the immediate health risk from COVID-19 is considered low. People in communities where ongoing community spread with the virus that causes COVID-19 has been reported are at elevated though still relatively low risk of exposure.
Patients with confirmed infection have reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of:
- Shortness of breath
The best prevention for viruses, such as influenza, the common cold or COVID-19 is to:
- Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
- Avoid contact with people who are sick.
- If you are sick, stay home, and avoid contact with others.