COVID-19, General, Medicare

Medicare and Coronavirus: What You Need to Know

April 2, 2020 • By

Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Last Updated: February 21, 2023

With the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), being informed about your Medicare coverage is more important than ever.

Medicare recently expanded its coverage of telehealth services. Telehealth enables beneficiaries to receive a wider range of healthcare services from doctors without having to travel to a healthcare facility. It also helps frontline clinicians stay safe themselves while treating people.

If your doctor orders a COVID-19 test for you, Medicare covers all of the costs. You should not have any co-pay, no matter what Medicare plan you’re enrolled in. There’s no vaccine for COVID-19 at this time, but when one becomes available, Medicare will cover it.

Medicare also covers all medically necessary hospitalizations. This includes extra days in the hospital for in-patients who were on the verge of being discharged, but were diagnosed with COVID-19 and had to stay longer under quarantine.

Doctors, nurse practitioners, clinical psychologists, and licensed clinical social workers can deliver telehealth services. Medicare beneficiaries can receive telehealth services in their home, as well as in any healthcare facility, a physician’s office, hospital, nursing home, or rural health clinic.

Telehealth services can include routine office visits, mental health counseling, and preventive health screenings for cancer and other illnesses.

By helping healthcare institutions across the nation offer medical services remotely, telehealth helps free up hospital emergency departments and doctors’ offices to deal with the most urgent COVID-19 cases.

During this emergency, Medicare will pay for telehealth services at the same rates as in-person services, giving doctors and other medical professionals the opportunity to reserve their offices to treat those who truly require in-person care.

We know many Medicare beneficiaries are concerned about the spread of coronavirus and the threat it poses to their well-being. That’s why we’ve taken these rapid steps to ensure that the Medicare program continues to protect our beneficiaries while maintaining trusted access to care in these uncertain times.

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  1. Lewis O.

    You are doing a fantastic job on behalf of our seniors. Our President made a very wise decision appointing you to lead CMS.

  2. Michelle

    fantastic information thank you for keeping us up to date and aware of all things going on during this scary time!

  3. Unknown

    I like TX medicare policy better because not only it created job but better benefits. The have a community clinic to reduce the cost of healthcare that donot have insurance. I loved NYC as a travel but TX is the better place to live.

  4. Brenda W.

    This information is good to know. With the coronavirus we senior citizens have to keep up with all information. Thank you Social Security.

  5. DAWN M.

    How do in find telehealth doctor in my area
    06705, Waterbury, CT

  6. P N.

    Very thankful and highly appreciable too
    during this very dangerous/anonymous period.
    A real timely help and assistances.

    Thanks again,

    P Nair

    • Eugene M.

      Thanks Medicare for being proactive on this Pandemic!

  7. Marshall L.

    Will i get that check that they sending out

    • Lauren V.

      Marshall , Are you on social security or do you file your taxes?? If you do either of those things you will get your money the same way you receive your social security or income tax. Whether it is direct deposit or whether you receive it by mail. I hope that helps with your question!

  8. Willi B.

    Just curious about the distribution of the “relief” package. Is my auto-deposit acct from SS good enough to receive the “relief” monies on auto-deposit basis? Is there a need to file something more?

    • James R.

      According to what I have been told as long as you filed 2018 and 2019’s Taxes there is nothing you have to do they already have your Banking Info from your Social Security Direct Deposit.

      • Rebecca T.

        I do not file taxes. My SS check is direct deposited into my account.
        Is there anything else I need to do to
        receive my “relief” package funds?

        • Lula M.

          Lula M Porter

      • Karen M.

        thanks for answering these questions!

      • Betty

        Ss people do not need to file taxes they will use your information from social security and however you receive your benefit you will receive your stimulus pay the same

        • mary p.

          So if you get SSI will you still get a check if you did not file taxes last year ? I did file rent credit.

        • Linda R.

          This is correct. AS LONG AS WE GET THE 1099 from SSI,we will get the check. I do not know about folks who began SS jan1 2020 since they dont already have a 1099 from SS.

    • Shirley K.

      Im so happy to hear about remote doctor visits!! It makes perfect sense during this time. I have been pushing for this through my local doctor for a very long time and I for one believe its way past due to happen. It is a multiple “win/win” for all. I sincerely pray that this technology will remain in place even after we have moved past the pandemic!!

      • Joseph I.


  9. Debra H.

    God bless and Thank You!

  10. MARY c.


    • Steve

      Mary, if you use a wheel mouse, just hold down the CTRL key and then use the roll to increase the text size. Roll in the opposite direction to decrease it if needed.

      • Neil B.

        Steve, I’ve been using a computer for a long time and I’ve just learned how to change the print size. Thank you!

        • AL


          • Neda m.

            You CAN teach an old dog new tricks!

          • Harriett W.

            See, it’s really how much fun we learn by others curiosity , plus our own .
            Thanks to all?.

      • Roberta P.

        That’s one way. But, those of us in public education know that we are held to a standard of accessibility for our websites. It seems the agency that handles Medicare should be held to the same standard. Accessibility options for this site should be built into the site, with icons representing the accessibility options (font style and size, language, text-to-speech) easily available for anyone to find and use.

        • Don L.

          Yes; I agree with you.

        • Judith T.

          I agree too!

        • Linda R.


      • Dennis D.

        I have been using computers since the 70’s and you just taught me how to zoom in and out. Now I’m not so sure that I am as smart as I thought I was. Thank You.

      • Jimmy E.

        Steve where were you 35 years ago?? All this time and not one soul I know ever mentioned this. WOW
        Thank you so much, can’t wait to show my wife.

      • KenB

        For those who use touchpad rather than a mouse, a similar effect is achieved using ctrl+ and ctrl- .

        • Barbara Z.

          On the touchpad do we do Control Plus at the same time?

      • Clifford S.

        Thanks Steve. Been using a computer since they came out with floppy disc, I am 87 and this was a new one on me. These old eyes can use the large print.

      • Glenda S.

        I’m not Mary, but thank you I just tried it!! Worked great!!

      • Mia

        Steve does this work MacBookPro also or does anyone know of a Mac training online course available? Just got mines last year and I’m still trying to figure it out ?

      • Maggie

        Thank you very much. I love to learn new things. Been using computer for a long time and never heard of this before.

    • BETTY G.

      otherwise, use ctrol and + key together enlarging as large as you want! it’s a must for me 😉 best wishes mary and all reading this.

      betty gordon, iowa

    • Fran

      I will be needing surgery for severe Sciatica. Medicare says if I am in the hospital for 1 day they will not cover. I must be in the hospital for 3 days in order for medicare to cover. This makes no sense to me. Having to stay 2 extra days to be covered when someone else can use that room. Where’s the logic in this?

      • Linda R.

        You may qualify for the hospital to waive the expense if your income in on a certain level. I THINK all medicare, even medicare advantage requires you to pay the first day or two. See what programs the hospital has.

        • Cynthia

          There are certain surgical procedures that are considered “inpatient only” procedures because it has the potential to cause harm in an outpatient setting if a patient was discharged too soon. I suspect your particular surgery is on the “inpatient only” list.

    • Raj K.


    • ZAKARIA M.

      Yes I fully agree the typeface should be bigger and bold

    • Rebecca G.

      Yes I agree!??

    • Patricia

      I agree,

Comments are closed.