Dr. Robin Larabee was thrilled to start offering coronavirus testing at her pediatrics practice in Denver last fall. Testing for children is often scarce, and her new machines could return results within minutes.
She quickly discovered an unexpected obstacle: a major health insurer that paid her less than the cost of the test itself. Each kit Larabee purchased for her machines cost about $41, but the insurer sent back half that amount each time she submitted a claim.
With new variants of the coronavirus emerging, experts say testing will be especially important. But the low fees have led some doctors to stop testing certain patients or to forgo testing altogether. The problem of low reimbursement rates appears to be most common with pediatricians using in-office rapid testing.Some doctors are stopping COVID-19 tests after being burned by low reimbursements from insurers – South Florida Sun-Sentinel