The Health Emergency Is Ending. Will COVID Costs Be Covered?

The health emergency expires May 11, with different impacts for those with private insurance, Medicare and Medicaid.
John Rossheim
By John Rossheim 
Edited by Rick VanderKnyff

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Why should you care that the COVID-19 public health emergency officially expires on May 11, 2023? Because, depending on your insurance, you may end up paying for tests, treatments and even vaccines.

“We’re going from a situation where we had universal access to COVID-19 vaccines, testing and treatment to one that looks more like the complexity of coverage and cost-sharing that characterizes the United States more generally,” says Sara R. Collins, senior scholar and vice president for health care coverage at The Commonwealth Fund, a health care advocacy foundation.

Every American could eventually see changes in their COVID-19 coverage, whether they have employer-provided or marketplace insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, or no insurance. And beginning this month, millions of Medicaid recipients are likely to lose all of that program’s health coverage, not just COVID-19 benefits.

Here’s a rundown on what to expect and how you can cope, depending on what kind of insurance you have.