On March 5 and February 13, CMS announced new Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) codes for healthcare providers and laboratories to test patients for SARS-CoV-2. Starting in April, laboratories performing the test can bill Medicare and other health insurers for services that occurred after February 4, 2020, using the newly created HCPCS code (U0001). This code is only to be used for the tests developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Laboratories performing non-CDC laboratory tests for SARS-CoV-2/2019-nCoV (COVID-19) can bill for them using a different HCPCS code (U0002).
Local Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) are responsible for developing the payment amount for claims they receive for these newly created HCPCS codes in their respective jurisdictions until Medicare establishes national payment rates. The payment amounts are identified below. As with other laboratory tests, there is generally no beneficiary cost sharing under Original Medicare.