Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to Axios Closer for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Axios on your phone

Get breaking news and scoops on the go with the Axios app.

Download for free.

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios NW Arkansas

Stay up-to-date on the most important and interesting stories affecting NW Arkansas, authored by local reporters

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Photo: GEORGES GOBET/AFP via Getty Images

More than a year after Congress required insurers to pay the full amount charged by out-of-network providers for COVID tests, the procedure has become extremely lucrative for some hospitals and other providers, KHN reports.

Why it matters: Even if patients don't have to directly pay for overpriced diagnostic tests, it adds onto the overall cost of care — which leads to higher insurance premiums.

State of play: Prices can vary from $20 to $1,419 for a single test, a recent KFF survey of the two largest hospitals in each state found. Federal law requires insurers to reimburse out-of-network providers the cash price of the tests posted on their website.

  • Medicare reimburses providers between $36 and $143 per test.
  • Some free-standing emergency rooms are charging more than $1,000 per test, KHN reports. And some in-network payment rates are high as well.

Between the lines: Hundreds of millions of coronavirus tests have been performed since the pandemic began, and they continue to be conducted routinely.

  • With that kind of volume, the cost of artificially high testing prices can add up quickly.

Go deeper

May 10, 2021 - Sports

420 athletes take part in Olympics test event in Tokyo

American Justin Gatlin (2nd L) crosses the finish line to win the men's 100m final ahead of Japan's Yuki Koike (L) and Shuhei Tada (R)during the "Ready Steady Tokyo" Olympics test event, part of the World Athletics Continental Tour at the National Stadium, in Tokyo Sunday. Photo: Toru Hanai/Getty Images

American sprinter Justin Gatlin was among 420 athletes to participate in a Tokyo test event with pandemic precautions in place Sunday ahead of this summer's delayed Olympic Games.

The big picture: No spectators were present during the event at Tokyo's Olympic Stadium as the city remains under a COVID-19 state of emergency due to a spike in coronavirus cases.

Fauci: Vaccines could turn COVID-19 "surges" into "blips"

NIAID director Anthony Fauci told "Meet the Press" Sunday that if more Americans get vaccinated in accordance with the Biden administration's goals, COVID-19 surges may be replaced by "blips."

State of play: Last week President Joe Biden announced his goal to get 160 million Americans fully vaccinated by July 4, with at least 70% of Americans having at least one shot.