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Receiving COVID-19 test through your UHC pharmacy/medical benefit plan

Update | Monday, January 31, 2022

On January 10, 2022, the Departments of Labor, Treasury, and Health and Human Services released guidance to support a federal directive that group health plans cover, subject to specific criteria, the cost of FDA-authorized or approved over-the-counter (OTC) COVID-19 home tests beginning on January 15. ((In order for the College’s chosen health plan through UHC to help cover these tests costs, premium rates being paid by the employee or employer may be impacted.)  

Home test coverage options for self-funded customers
UnitedHealthcare (UHC) covers group health plan members’ FDA-authorized or approved OTC COVID-19 at-home tests without a doctor’s prescription or clinical assessment. This COVID-19 at home test benefit includes up to eight tests per member per 30 days.

This information applies to the Columbus State plans. Contact your UHC customer service representative for additional details or questions. 

Home test coverage for employees on the College’s health insurance plan
Columbus State plan participants have two options to receive reimbursement for OTC COVID-19 at-home test kits.

  • Preferred Retailers
    UHC has developed a list of Preferred Retailers. A Preferred Retailer is a pharmacy that UHC has an arrangement with to provide OTC COVID-19 at-home tests at no cost to the member at the time of purchase. (Take the test to the Preferred Pharmacy counter for processing at no upfront cost.) Preferred Retailers and their websites may be found on the UHC Preferred Retailer list. UnitedHealthcare is working on adding additional Preferred Retailers.
  • Other retailers or online
    If the member purchases a COVID-19 at-home test at any in-store or online retailer other than at the Preferred Retailer in-store pharmacy counter, they may submit purchase receipts for reimbursement at the UHC member portal for a maximum of $12 per test. Many at-home tests are sold as a two-pack. In that case, the reimbursement would be up to $24 ($12 for each test).

Note: a member must be a UnitedHealthcare group health plan participant and have UnitedHealthcare’s Pharmacy with the OptumRx solution benefit to purchase OTC at-home test kits at the Preferred Retailer at no cost using their UnitedHealthcare member ID card. 

You may submit a receipt online to UHC at, or use the reimbursement form.


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