Most people won’t have to pay for COVID-19 testing

photo of a COVID-19 Drive-up Testing Location

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 like a fever, cough, shortness of breath, muscle aches, sore throat, or decrease in smell or taste, you should be tested for COVID-19.

The health department may recommend you get tested if you came into close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19, even if you are not sick. If so, they’ll give you a referral code for testing. Some healthcare workers or residents of high-risk facilities (like nursing homes or homeless shelters) are tested even if they don’t have symptoms. Otherwise, only people with at least one symptom of COVID-19 can get tested.

COVID-19 Symptoms

Most people will not have to pay for COVID-19 testing. You should not be asked for payment when you go to a testing location.

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act and subsequent sub-regulatory guidance ensures the cost of getting a COVID-19 test is covered at 100% if you have health insurance and you have a medical reason to be tested. This means you have symptoms of COVID-19, you have had close contact with someone who has COVID-19, or you have a referral from a healthcare professional or the health department to get tested. 

If you have health insurance, you should not be charged for a test no matter what testing site you go to. Healthcare providers are required by federal law to post a cash price for COVID-19 tests. This is to inform health insurance companies what to pay if you get tested by a provider that is out-of-network. If you are insured and have been charged for a test, please email the Utah Department of Health at

Your insurance company may offer a symptom checker, live chat, etc., if you have questions about COVID-19. Several of Utah’s major health insurers COVID-19 webpages are linked below.

You may be charged if you are getting tested for employment, travel, or non-medical reasons

Testing for general workplace health and safety (such as employee ‘return to work’ programs), public health surveillance, or any other purpose not primarily intended for diagnosis or treatment of COVID-19 or another health condition are not included in the requirements of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and may not be covered by your health insurance.Check with your health insurance company for coverage details before you get tested. 

If you are uninsured and are a U.S. citizen and a Utah resident, you qualify for COVID-19 testing coverage through Medicaid.

Medicaid COVID-19 testing coverage for the uninsured covers the COVID-19 tests and all testing related services including doctor appointments (both in-person and through telehealth), ER visits, and any services performed in order to diagnose COVID-19, including X-rays, etc. Testing and other services will be paid for back to the date of your services. You must apply for this program at

If you are uninsured and do not qualify for the Medicaid option, there are locations that will provide testing free of charge. If you need help finding a location that provides free testing please call the Utah Coronavirus Hotline at 1-800-456-7707 or use the chat feature on the website. 

No one should be afraid to get tested because of cost.    

Major health insurance webpages for COVID-19

  • AETNA/Altius of Utah
    Aetna will cover diagnostic tests without cost to the patient, but they generally do not cover a test performed at the direction of a member’s employer or for return to school or recreational activities.
  • BridgeSpan
    If your doctor believes you need to be tested, there is no pre-authorization required and testing will be covered under your usual health plan benefits.
  • Cigna
    Cigna covers diagnosis, testing, and treatment associated with COVID-19.
  • Molina
    As long as you meet the guidelines for testing and have a doctor’s order, testing can be done anywhere COVID-19 testing is provided.
  • Regence BlueCross
    BlueShield If a doctor believes you need to be tested for COVID-19, Regence will cover the cost of the COVID-19 test and related office visits. No pre-authorization is required. Diagnostic testing and the associated office visit will be covered at 100%.
  • Select Health
    Regardless of your plan, in-network testing and treatment for COVID-19 is covered 100%.