U.S. Attorney’s Office and HHS-OIG Advise COVID-19 Vaccine Providers Not to Charge Individuals Seeking COVID-19 Vaccines
SACRAMENTO, CA (STL.News) Acting U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert joins the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG), and the California Department of Justice today to advise the public that they should not be asked to pay to receive the COVID-19 vaccine and warned COVID-19 vaccination providers not to seek payment from individual COVID-19 vaccine recipients.
COVID-19 vaccination providers participating in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID-19 Vaccination Program are required to sign an agreement to receive and dispense vaccines. Among requirements in the agreement, providers must administer the vaccine regardless of the recipient’s ability to pay. While providers may seek appropriate reimbursement from a public or private program or plan that covers COVID-19 vaccine administration fees, providers may not seek any reimbursement from the vaccine recipient.
Noncompliance with the terms of the Provider Agreement, such as by billing vaccine recipients for the COVID-19 vaccine or denying an individual a vaccination because they are unable to pay any out-of-pocket fees, may result in the provider’s suspension or termination from the CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Program and potential criminal and civil penalties.