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How can I get treatment for COVID-19 if I'm uninsured or undocumented? How do I cover health costs associated with COVID-19?

Last Updated: 04/24/2020

Health Insurance

If you do not have health insurance or lose coverage, you may be eligible for free or low-cost coverage (www.njfamilycare.org) through NJ FamilyCare, New Jersey's publicly funded health insurance program. NJ Family Care includes CHIP, Medicaid and Medicaid expansion populations and covers doctor visits, prescriptions, vision, dental care, mental health and substance use services and even hospitalization.

If you have experienced a life-changing event, such as losing job-based health coverage, you may qualify for a Special Enrollment Period that would allow you to presently enroll in health coverage. If you or anyone in your household lost qualifying health coverage in the past 60 days OR expects to lose coverage in the next 60 days, you may qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.

Visit GetCoveredNJ (www.getcovered.nj.gov) to see if you qualify or go directly to www.healthcare.gov to enroll in coverage.

Trained professionals are available to help with enrollment. You can reach a trained navigator by phone, by calling the Center for Family Services Statewide Navigator Enrollment Hotline at 1-877-9-NAVIG8 (1-877-962-8448).

Note: State and federal law also require that most employees and dependents who lose health coverage under an employer's group health plan be given the opportunity to continue coverage for a period of time. Under the federal law (COBRA) and state law, the person electing to continue coverage can be required to pay the full premium plus a 2% administrative fee. You can contact your employer or benefits administrator for more information.

Does NJ FamilyCare cover costs associated with COVID-19?

NJ FamilyCare, the State's publicly funded health insurance program, covers testing, visits for testing, and testing-related services without cost to members. The program will also cover 90-day supplies of prescriptions for maintenance medications and early refills of prescriptions.

Additionally, New Jersey has taken administrative actionto waive consumer cost sharing for all medically necessary COVID-19 testing, as well as services related to testing. The waiving of consumer cost sharing applies to the State's individual, small, and large group markets; the State Health Benefits and School Employee Health Benefits Plans; NJ FamilyCare's CHIP population; and the state's uninsured population, eligible for the Charity Care program.

How do I apply for NJ FamilyCare?

If you have experienced a life-changing event, such as losing your job or health coverage, you may qualify for a Special Enrollment Period that would allow you to presently enroll in health coverage. If you or anyone in your household lost qualifying health coverage in the past 60 days OR expects to lose coverage in the next 60 days, you may qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.

Visit GetCoveredNJ(www.getcovered.nj.gov) to see if you qualify or go directly to www.healthcare.govto enroll in coverage.

For providers, the Department of Human Services Novel Coronavirus page has information on NJ FamilyCare/Medicaid waivers: https://nj.gov/humanservices/coronavirus.html

Federally Qualified Health Centers, Charity Care, and Community Clinics

Individuals without health insurance may also be able to access care from community clinics or federally qualified health centers (FQHCs). Find a FQHC near you with this search tool. Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) provide health care and COVID-19 testing without cost to all people without insurance and without regard to immigration status. Please call your local Federally Qualified Health Center ahead of time for availability and instructions.

In addition, a list of community clinics and FQHCs can be found by searching this resource from NJ 211or by directly calling 2-1-1 (support available in English and Spanish). Individuals with urgent symptoms may also continue to access services at acute care hospitals.

The COVID-19 testing cost will be waived for uninsured individuals eligible for charity care. Information on Charity Care Program can be found at: https://www.nj.gov/health/charitycare. You should talk to a medical provider before going to your local hospital.

Undocumented New Jerseyans

First, find out if you need testing or care for COVID-19 by completing the COVID-19 Symptom Checker.

If you live in New Jersey and have symptoms of COVID-19, you can be tested at many public testing sites around New Jersey at no charge to you, regardless of your immigration status or whether you have health insurance.

Immigration officials have confirmedthat testing, treatment, and preventative care related to COVID-19 will not negatively affect an individual's public charge analysis.

Source: https://www.nj.gov/governor/news/news/562020/20200310a.shtml
https://nj.gov/humanservices/coronavirus.html
https://nj.gov/health/cd/documents/topics/NCOV/COVID-19_Resources_forUndocumented_and_UninsuredFactsheet.pdf; https://www.state.nj.us/dobi/covid/faq.html