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August 15, 2020

DES MOINES, IA – Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield announced today that it will continue to waive cost-sharing for members undergoing inpatient treatment related to a COVID-19 diagnosis through Dec. 31, 2020. Extension of the waiver, which was scheduled to expire Aug. 31, 2020, provides Wellmark members with ongoing relief from copays, coinsurance, and deductibles for inpatient treatment of COVID-19 from an in-network health care provider.

Wellmark will also continue to cover appropriate testing and related services — with no cost-share — to establish the diagnosis of COVID-19 as required by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act through the public health emergency, as declared by the federal government.

"Wellmark understands COVID-19's tremendous impacts — both health and economic — to our members and the communities we serve. Wellmark is reaffirming its commitment to protect the health and well-being of Iowans and South Dakotans by ensuring that our members can get the care they need for COVID-19 without any financial barriers," said Cory Harris, Wellmark's President and CEO-Elect. "We will continue to act swiftly and decisively to meet the specific needs of our members, employers, communities, and health care partners as we fight this pandemic. In light of all of the other challenges this year has brought, Wellmark's decision to extend this benefit through 2020 shows our members that they can continue to count on us."

Wellmark's COVID-19 benefits apply to all Wellmark fully-insured and Medicare supplement members. Wellmark will continue to work with self-funded groups who want to implement or continue offering similar benefits for their members.

To learn more about Wellmark's response to COVID-19, visit Wellmark.com/coronavirus.