Some Drug Tests Required by New Kentucky Law Aren’t Covered by Insurance

Patients in Kentucky with long-term medical conditions that require controlled substances must submit to urine drug tests under a new state law designed to combat prescription drug abuse. Those tests are not always covered by insurance companies, the Associated Press reports.

Governor Steve Beshear acknowledged that the cost may be prohibitive for some patients, the AP notes. He said state officials are trying to come up with a solution. “We are working with the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure to review options, including exploring whether other tests (blood, hair, etc.) could be as effective,” he said. “We are also consulting with private insurance groups and managed care organizations about their policies regarding this standard of care, because some are covering the tests while others are not.”

The law requires that doctors obtain a urine sample from patients who are prescribed controlled substances for more than three months. If the results indicate the patient is likely to abuse or sell the medication, doctors cannot write a new prescription. Random drug tests are also required under the new law.

“We anticipated this. Now we’re starting to see third-party vendors denying payment for the tests, as we feared,” Cory Meadows, spokesman for the Kentucky Medical Association, told the AP. “It’s still early in the game, so concrete numbers are hard to come by at this point. But this certainly will be a significant issue.”

2 Responses to Some Drug Tests Required by New Kentucky Law Aren’t Covered by Insurance

  1. scott gardner | October 23, 2012 at 5:58 pm

    Dear Sirs’
    My wife has been injured in a Work Comp. case in 1992. She was an RN-ER when this occurred. She has had to take a monthly urine/mouth swab test for narcotic use every month for the past two years. The cost has recently shifted to her. If this form of testing is to be used to what? To see she is not dumping the drugs on the street? She is taking them herself? Selling them? If this is required by the state then the state should pay the bill. I can understand an occasional test, but every month @ 300.00 this seems a bit much don’t you think.

  2. Rita Collins | July 13, 2013 at 1:03 am

    I went to my doctor in December and he ordered a urine drug screen. My medicare paid for it and I passed the drug test. All I had in my system was what the doctor prescribed. I am just wondering how often that the law requires Doctors to do this because my Medicare will not pay for it except for once a year from what I understand.

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