BOSTON, Dec. 15, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts ("Blue Cross") today confirmed it will cover, with no cost share to members, the administration of any COVID-19 vaccine that receives emergency use authorization or full approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The federal government has purchased vaccines to be distributed to the states. Medicare will cover vaccine administration for Medicare Advantage and Medex members when administered by any clinician who accepts Medicare.
"We made the commitment at the start of the pandemic in March to cover the cost of a COVID-19 vaccine once it became available," said Katherine Dallow, MD, MPH, vice president of clinical programs and strategy at Blue Cross. "Our goal is to remove any doubt about insurance coverage. The focus right now should be solely on a widespread public health vaccination campaign so we can rein in this global pandemic."
There are a number of COVID-19 vaccines being developed. So far, a vaccine developed by Pfizer/BioNTech has been authorized for distribution through the FDA's Emergency Use Authorization process. Cambridge-based Moderna Therapeutics could receive authorization for its vaccine by the end of December 2020. Both vaccines require two separate doses that are given three to four weeks apart, and both doses are required for the vaccine to be fully effective. Blue Cross has already implemented billing codes for both vaccines.
Federal and state health officials are prioritizing distribution of the vaccine, with front line clinical and non-clinical health care workers doing direct and COVID-facing care first, followed by residents and staff of long term care facilities, and first responders. Members should consult the Commonwealth of Massachusetts' COVID-19 Vaccine Resource Center and talk to their primary care provider about how, when, and where to get vaccinated.
Blue Cross will continue to monitor vaccine development and be responsive to state and federal guidance. The company has taken significant steps to expand access to care throughout the duration of the COVID-19 public health emergency and invested more than $218 million to support its members, customers, clinical partners, and the community throughout the pandemic, including $101 million in premium refunds and anticipated rebates.
Members with questions can call the Blue Cross COVID-19 helpline at 1-888-372-1970. For more information on how Blue Cross is supporting members during the COVID-19 emergency, visit its Coronavirus Resource Center.
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts (bluecrossma.org) is a community-focused, tax-paying, not-for-profit health plan headquartered in Boston. We are committed to the relentless pursuit of quality, affordable health care with an unparalleled consumer experience. Consistent with our promise to always put our members first, we are rated among the nation's best health plans for member satisfaction and quality. Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and LinkedIn.
SOURCE Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts