“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,” said Seema Verma, head of the federal CMS.
However, the new guidance did not make clear whether the free antibody tests would be extended to uninsured Americans. CMS did not immediately respond to a request for clarification.
The antibody tests will help determine how many people were infected who experienced no or minimal symptoms. It’s still not known how much immunity a person gains from the novel disease after infection.
Senior Senate Republicans Lamar Alexander and Roy Blunt earlier this week called on the administration to declare antibody tests free for patients.
“Free tests will help contain the disease and give Americans confidence that it is safe to go back to work and back to school and restart the economy,” they wrote.