CMS is currently updating their COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkits to help vaccine providers with the new payment system. Medicare reimbursement rates have been a benchmark for private insurance plans; CMS, along with the Departments of Labor and Treasury, is requiring that most private health plans and issuers cover administration of the COVID-19 vaccine – using Medicare reimbursement rates as a potential guideline.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) reimbursement rate for COVID-19 vaccinations has been $16.94 for the first dose and $28.39 for the second dose, with some geographic variation. On March 11, 2021 the American Rescue Plan Act was enacted, which increases reimbursement rates for COVID-19 vaccination. The new plan calls for higher reimbursement to ensure safe and appropriate administration of COVID-19 vaccines. It also states that there will be no charge to recipients during the public health emergency and for up to 1 year afterwards. For vaccinations received after March 15, 2021 the reimbursement rate is $40 for each dose. With vaccine supplies growing, the increased reimbursement rate comes at an essential time. It is expected to increase vaccinations and encourage vaccine outreach.
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