Member Coronavirus Information
COVID-19 Public Health emergency Extended by federal government
On July 19, 2021, HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra renewed the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE). This extends flexibilities and funding tied to the PHE to continue for another 90 days, effective July 20, 2021.
With this renewal the various testing, screening, billing, and telehealth coverages that were implemented in response to the COVID-19 PHE will be extended to our members. This extension will continue until the PHE is either terminated or extended again.
Do you have any questions about this extension or the covered benefits impacted by it? Please contact Member Services.
HSH22022 | 07/26/2021
What you need to know about COVID-19
COVID-19 is a disease that causes respiratory illness in people and can spread from person to person. People of all ages can be infected. Older adults and people with pre-existing medical conditions like asthma, diabetes and heart disease may be more likely to become severely ill if infected.
COVID-19 is a respiratory disease that is caused by a new virus called a coronavirus, which has become a public health emergency. The number of cases continue to increase nationally and globally.
The symptoms of coronavirus include mild to severe respiratory symptoms. Symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath, and lower respiratory illness. COVID-19 can be contagious before a person begins showing symptoms.
Influenza (the flu), a contagious respiratory illness caused by the influenza viruses (Type A and Type B), has high activity in the United States in the Fall/Winter. Everyone 6 months of age and older should get a flu vaccine annually.
If you have been exposed or begin showing symptoms of the virus or flu, contact your healthcare provider or health department immediately.
Babylon is a convenient way for Home State Health members to obtain telehealth services. You will receive [24-hour] access to in-network healthcare providers for non-emergency medical issues. Get medical advice, a diagnosis or a prescription by video or phone. For more information about Home State Health services, please www.homestatehealth.com or call 1-855-694-(HOME) 4663
If you are having anxiety or stress or need emotional support, *Behavioral health services are available at the same link, 24/7 Access to a Doctor, Monday - Friday 7:00 a.m. to 7 p.m. CST
We all have a role to play in protecting our communities and families from the spread of coronavirus. It is similar to other communicable viruses. You can also follow these tips to prevent infection:
- Wash your hands thoroughly and frequently. Use soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizing rub (must contain at least 60 percent alcohol).
- Wear a face covering/mask when in public and/or around others who do not live in your home if you are not fully vaccinated.
- Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze by coughing/sneezing into your elbow.
- Promptly dispose of tissues in a wastebasket after use.
- Clean public surfaces thoroughly.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Avoid shaking hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Get a flu vaccine annually.
Yes. When medically necessary diagnostic testing, medical screening services and/or treatment is ordered and/or referred by a licensed health care provider, we will cover the cost of medically necessary COVID-19 tests, screenings, associated physician’s visit(s) and/or treatment.
No. We will not require prior authorization, prior certification, prior notification and/or step therapy protocols for medically necessary COVID-19 diagnostic testing, medical screening services, and/or treatment when medically necessary services are ordered and/or referred by a licensed health care provider.
Medically necessary COVID-19 diagnostic testing, medical screening services and/or treatment and the associated physician’s visit will be covered when ordered, referred and/or performed in the following In-Network locations:
- Physician’s/Practitioner’s Office
- Independent Laboratory/Diagnostic Facility
- Urgent Care Facility
- Emergency Department Facility
Are you unsure if you have been exposed to or at-risk of being infected with COVID-19? Schedule a virtual care visit with a provider. It is a good option for non-urgent care to limit potential exposure in a physician’s office or other healthcare facility.
Any medically necessary treatment related to COVID-19 would be considered a covered benefit. We are committed to ensuring access to COVID-19 treatment services in accordance with federal and state law.
There is now a vaccination available that will give you the best chance of protecting yourself and your loved ones from getting COVID-19 in the future. Some COVID-19 vaccines will have two doses a few weeks in between each shot. You will get a COVID-19 Vaccination Reminder Card that will help you keep track of which vaccine you receive and when to get a second dose, if needed. If you receive a vaccine that requires two doses, it is important to get both doses.
The vaccine is being administered to different populations in a tiered approach. When you are able to get the vaccine, call your doctor with any questions and ask when you can make an appointment with them or at your local pharmacy. Or, find out where to get your vaccine at cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines or vaccinefinder.org
While it is not a requirement, getting your COVID-19 vaccine will give you the best chance of protecting yourself and your loved ones from getting COVID-19 in the future.
Even if you have already had COVID-19, you should still get the vaccine. It may be possible to be infected more than once so getting the vaccine is a safe choice.
The CDC recommends COVID-19 vaccines for everyone 6 months and older, and boosters for everyone 5 years and older, if eligible.
Everyone Ages 18 and Older Can Get a Booster Shot
- Everyone ages 5 years and older can get 1 booster after completing their COVID-19 vaccine primary series.
Eligible for 2 boosters:
- Adults ages 50 years and older
- People ages 12 years and older who are moderately or severely immunocompromised
- People who got 2 doses (1 primary dose and 1 booster) of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine
The CDC currently recommends the COVID-19 vaccine for pregnant women. If you have questions about getting the vaccine, it is recommended to discuss with your doctor to make an informed decision.
Fully vaccinated is considered two weeks past final dose, meaning the second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer mRNA vaccine, or, two weeks past the single dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
To maximize protection from COVID-19 and prevent possibly spreading it to others, wear a mask indoors in public if you are in an area of substantial of high transmission.
Wearing a mask is most important if you have a weakened immune system or if, because of your age or an underlying medical condition, you are at increased risk for severe disease, or if someone in your household has a weakened immune system, is at increased risk for severe disease, or is unvaccinated. If this applies to you or your household, you might choose to wear a mask regardless of the level of transmission in your area.
Fully vaccinated people who have come into close contact with someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 to be tested 3-5 days after exposure, and to wear a mask in public indoor settings for 14 days or until they receive a negative test result.
The Delta variant is highly contagious, nearly twice as contagious as previous variants
Some data suggest the Delta variant might cause more severe illness than previous strains in unvaccinated persons
Unvaccinated people remain at the greatest risk for severe illness, hospitalization, and death
Fully vaccinated people with Delta variant breakthrough infections can spread the virus to others. However, vaccinated people appear to be infectious for a shorter period of time
Vaccines are highly effective, including against the Delta variant
A small percentage of people who are fully vaccinated will still get COVID-19 if they are exposed to the virus that causes it. These are called “vaccine breakthrough cases.” This means that while people who have been vaccinated are much less likely to get sick, it will still happen in some cases. It’s also possible that some fully vaccinated people might have infections, but not have symptoms (asymptomatic infections). Experts continue to study how common these cases are.
If you get COVID-19 after vaccination, your symptoms might be less severe
Fully vaccinated people are much less likely to be hospitalized or die than people with similar risk factors who are not vaccinated
The safety of the COVID-19 vaccine is a top priority! The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) carefully reviews all safety data from clinical trials and authorizes emergency vaccine use only when the expected benefits outweigh potential risks. COVID-19 vaccines were tested in large clinical trials to make sure they meet safety standards.
You may run a fever after you get the vaccine. This is normal as your body builds immunity and fights off future COVID-19 exposures. You may feel sick after getting vaccinated. You could develop a fever, headache or body aches. This is your body reacting to the vaccine, which is a normal response. It is important to know that it is impossible to get COVID-19 from the vaccine. The vaccines currently in use and others being developed do not contain a live virus.
No. The COVID-19 vaccine will be at no cost to you. You do not need to get a prior authorization for your vaccine.
Please call the administering facility/provider you received your first dose from to ask about your vaccine information and verify your second appointment/location.
The provider should have scheduled a second appointment with you at the same facility when you received the first dose. However, you can receive your second dose from another provider/facility and you should present your COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card.
Yes. Home State Health members may contact Member Services to arrange transportation.
Lyft and Uber offer free rides to anyone going to a vaccination site to get vaccinated. Using the Lyft or Uber app, you can select a vaccination site near you and follow simple directions to redeem your ride. The ride will take you to and from a nearby vaccination site free of charge. The feature will run until July 4.
Worry and anxiety can rise about the spread of COVID-19. Concern for friends and family who live in places where COVID-19 is spreading or the progression of the disease is natural.
- Take care of your body. Take deep breaths, stretch or meditate.
- Connect with others. Share your concerns and how you are feeling with a friend or family member. Maintain healthy relationships and a sense of hope and positive thinking.
- Share the facts about COVID-19 and the actual risk to others. People who have returned from areas of ongoing spread more than 14 days ago and do not have symptoms of COVID-19 do not put others at risk.
- For more information, see the CDC’s suggestions for mental health and coping during COVID-19
- If you are having anxiety or stress or need emotional support, *Behavioral health services are available 24/7 Access to a Doctor, Monday - Friday 7:00 a.m. to 7 p.m. CST