WASHINGTON—AARP Executive Vice President and Chief Advocacy and Engagement Officer Nancy LeaMond issued the following statement about Medicare enrollees soon having access to at-home COVID tests at no cost:
“AARP applauds today’s announcement that will guarantee access to at-home over-the-counter COVID-19 tests at no cost for Medicare’s 64 million beneficiaries and we thank Secretary Becerra and Administrator Brooks-LaSure for their diligence in addressing this issue. Expanded access to no-cost testing will help protect seniors who have been hit hardest by the pandemic and ensure they can remain connected with their loved ones and community.
“Every American should have an easy way to get at-home COVID tests. We know that people 65 and older are at much greater risk of serious illness and death from this disease – they need equal access to tools that can help keep them safe. The cost of paying for tests and the time needed to find free testing options are barriers that could discourage Medicare beneficiaries from getting tested, leading to greater social isolation and continued spread of the virus.
“It is clear that regular testing is a crucial part of managing the spread of COVID-19. That’s why AARP has been calling for coverage of at-home tests under Medicare equal to that of private health insurance. We are pleased that CMS listened to our concerns and found a path forward to cover over-the-counter tests for seniors. AARP will continue to watch for details about when and how at-home COVID tests are made available to those in Medicare.”
On January 25, 2022 AARP sent a letter to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra concerning the current lack of access to at-home COVID-19 tests for Medicare beneficiaries.
AARP is the nation’s largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering people 50 and older to choose how they live as they age. With a nationwide presence and nearly 38 million members, AARP strengthens communities and advocates for what matters most to families: health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. AARP also produces the nation's largest circulation publications: AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. To learn more, visit www.aarp.org, www.aarp.org/espanol or follow @AARP, @AARPenEspanol and @AARPadvocates, @AliadosAdelante on