Ernst Works to Increase Access to COVID-19 Testing for Iowans

Ernst is fighting to eliminate loopholes that deny or restrict coverage for COVID-19 testing

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) is continuing her work to support Iowans during this pandemic by increasing access to COVID-19 testing. Following reports that insurance companies are using loopholes in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to deny or restrict coverage for COVID-19 testing, Ernst is supporting an effort to ensure Iowans have access to affordable COVID-19 tests, insurance covers antibody tests, and testing information is efficiently shared among health care providers and public health officials.
 
“As we continue to fight COVID-19, it is critical that Iowans have access to affordable coronavirus testing,” Senator Ernst said. “Reports that health insurers are exploiting loopholes to deny or restrict coverage for COVID-19 testing are egregious and completely unacceptable. This bill will ensure that Iowans have access to affordable testing—which is essential to defeating this virus and continuing to safely return to our daily lives.”
 
The Affordable Coronavirus Testing Act:
  1. Eliminates an existing loophole in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act used by insurance companies to deny or restrict coverage for COVID-19 testing.
  2. Establishes insurance coverage of COVID-19 serology tests.
  3. Requires the United States Department of Health and Human Services to reserve funds to cover testing for uninsured patients.
  4. Improves the ability to track and prevent the spread of infectious disease by modernizing CDC's antiquated public health data system to make reporting and information-sharing easier and accessible for public health officials, doctors, nurses and pharmacists.
 
###