Just one day after the Biden administration extended the public health emergency (PHE) through mid-October, AHIP published a report arguing that price-gouging on COVID-19 tests continues to be a problem. Crucially, that issue was created when pandemic relief legislation removed health insurers’ ability to hold down out-of-network charges for COVID tests, the trade group says.
Health policy experts who have studied COVID test prices and pandemic relief legislation say that AHIP’s findings are not at all off base. However, there may be little chance of addressing insurers’ concerns anytime soon.
“The laws, as Congress enacted, very clearly encourage price gouging on COVID tests, so it’s no surprise that it continues,” says Loren Adler, associate director of the USC-Brookings Schaeffer Initiative for Health Policy.