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COVID vaccines are free, even if you don’t have insurance

The demand for COVID vaccines is high. A new United States Census Bureau survey found that 47% of adults over 18 have already gotten at least one dose.

However, not everyone is lining up to get the shot.

The federal government is offering the vaccine for free. Yet, people without health insurance are only half as likely to get vaccinated as people with coverage, Forbes reports.

Why? It could be a simple misunderstanding.

Some people may not know they can get the vaccine for free without insurance. Even if they realize it, they may get confused when vaccination providers or sign-up forms ask for insurance information.

But know this: You don’t need insurance to get the vaccine for free.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), COVID vaccination providers cannot:

  • Charge for the vaccine
  • Charge administration fees or copayments
  • Deny the shot to anyone without health insurance coverage
  • Charge for an office visit if the only service provided is a COVID vaccination
  • Require additional services be given along with the vaccine

Vaccine providers may ask if you have insurance. That’s because they’re allowed to bill private or public insurance companies for administration fees. An example is paying staff to give the shots.

How to find your free COVID vaccine

Your best move is to contact your local health department. Use this online locator or vaccine finder.

Other vaccine sites include:

If you do get a bill for your COVID shot, don’t panic. Simply contact your health insurance company. If you don’t have insurance, contact the clinic, pharmacy, or hospital where you got the vaccine.

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