Warren County Health Department Administrator Jenna Link Explains Changes in Insurance with COVID Vaccines


The FDA has recently approved a new updated COVID booster shot, which will be a monovalent booster targeting the strain of COVID circulating right now, much like the seasonal flu shots. As the emergency declaration for COVID ended in May, this updated booster will now be privatized and will need to be purchased, explains Warren County Health Department Administrator Jenna Link:

“Things are going to look a lot different with insurance and COVID. During the emergency declaration, all of that was covered, so all of our immunizations that we gave, the vaccine was provided from the government and then we were given grant funding that paid to have it administered. That is all going away and so all of the vaccine is privatized and has to be purchased and billed to insurance. Typically for us, a lot of our programs are grant funded programs. We really don’t have a lot of services that we bill insurances for, on the dental side yes, public health side no. For us, we will no longer be administering that for free.”

Administrator Link informs those 18 years and younger with public aid, uninsured, or underinsured, qualify for the Vaccine for Children Program and can still be administered the vaccine.

post from the Warren County Health Department

The Emergency Declaration for COVID ended in May 2023. COVID vaccine was provided for everyone by the federal government but that has ended. The updated booster that has been projected for the fall of 2023 will now be privatized and must be purchased. Up until now the health department has been able to provide the vaccinations free of charge through grant funding for administering the vaccinations but that funding does not allow for the purchase of the vaccine. We do not bill private insurance or Medicare for any public health services. Going forward we will only be able to administer the vaccine to those eligible for the Vaccine For Children Program (18 years and under with Medicaid, uninsured, or underinsured). We have applied to participate in the Bridge Program which will be for those 18 years and up who are uninsured or underinsured. Those with Medicare and private insurance will need to get their updated immunization from their provider or pharmacy. We have enjoyed serving our community over the past few years with COVID vaccinations. We apologize for any inconvenience created by the policy change.

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