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Rep. Katie Porter Calls on Health Insurers to Guarantee Coverage of COVID-19 Vaccine

Katie Porter

Congresswoman urges insurance companies not to impose cost sharing requirements on patients for vaccine administration

WASHINGTONCongresswoman Katie Porter (CA-45) today called on insurance companies to guarantee that they will not charge Americans for COVID-19 vaccines or their administration. She was joined by Reps. Rosa DeLauro (CT-3), Jan Schakowsky (IL-9), Lauren Underwood (IL-14), Peter Welch (VT-At Large), and Pramila Jayapal (WA-7) in demanding swift action from the national association representing health insurers.

“Despite laws requiring free COVID testing and a commitment I secured from the Administration, too many Americans have still found themselves on the hook for testing bills—we cannot allow the same to happen for vaccines,” Congresswoman Porter said. “If patients have to worry about whether or not getting a vaccine is covered, we run a real risk of people opting out of getting vaccinated and this crisis continuing for even longer. For the sake of our nation’s public health, we need health insurance companies to step up and do the right thing.”

In a letter to America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), Congresswoman Porter called on health insurers to clarify that patients are not responsible for any cost-sharing requirements for the administration of a COVID-19 vaccine. Federal law requires full coverage without cost sharing for certain immunizations, but not all insurance companies have said whether they classify COVID-19 vaccines in this category. Many insurance companies also impose restrictions around who can administer the vaccine and where it can be administered. Congresswoman Porter requested that all of these costs and restrictions be immediately waived.

Congresswoman Porter has been a leader during the coronavirus pandemic in fighting for better healthcare for Orange County families. Last July, she introduced the Patients Before Profits Act, which holds insurance companies accountable by requiring that they not renegotiate contracts during an ongoing public health crisis. Congresswoman Porter also secured a commitment that the Trump Administration would use its existing authority to make COVID-19 testing free for every American.

Read the full text of the letter HERE.