Vermont to ensure free testing for virus for those qualified

March 6, 2020 GMT

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — The state of Vermont will ensure that people who meet the requirements for testing for the new coronavirus can get tested for free, Gov. Phil Scott said.

The state did not have any COVID-19 cases as of Friday afternoon.

The state has issued an emergency bulletin requiring Vermont health insurers to waive any out-of-pocket expenses for COVID-19 testing, the Heath Department said. Medicaid members also will not be charged and state government will absorb the cost of the test for anyone who does not have insurance, the department said. About 3% of Vermonters are uninsured, the state said.

Testing in Vermont has been expanded to people who have a fever and cough or shortness of breath, have traveled to an affected area or been in contact with or exposed to someone who is sick but are not ill enough to be hospitalized, Health Commissioner Dr. Mark Levine said Thursday. Before, it was limited to those who met the criteria and were hospitalized.