Costs related to coronavirus testing forced Maryland state leaders to peg Aug. 15 as the date the state no longer will be able to pick up the tab for mandatory weekly COVID-19 testing of nursing home staff. Instead, the facilities themselves will be forced to cover the cost, which can range from $100 to $125 per employee each week.
“This coupled with all of the increased costs related to personal protective equipment really is putting a huge burden on providers that they are not set up to manage,” Allison Ciborowski, president of LeadingAge Maryland, told WTOP News.
Although facilities might be able to receive federal aid to cover costs, weekly ongoing testing likely would deplete that aid quickly. For a nursing home with 300 employees, testing costs could be in the realm of $37,500 per week.
Further, although health insurance typically covers a single test if there’s reason to believe the person may have COVID-19, it does not cover “surveillance testing,” where someone is being tested weekly as a precaution.
Ciborowski told WTOP News that the industry is continuing to negotiate with the state ahead of the state’s cutoff date.
This article appeared in the McKnight’s Business Daily, a joint effort of McKnight’s Senior Living and McKnight’s Long-Term Care News.