COVID-19 Coronavirus Update

Independent Health’s top priority is to protect the health and well-being of all our members and the safety of our employees and their families.
Last Updated 08/26/21

Coverage for COVID-19 Testing:
When, where, and how it is covered


When COVID-19 Testing is covered

  • For diagnosis of COVID-19: Independent Health covers diagnostic testing when you or your health care provider decide you need test to see if you have COVID-19. Diagnostic tests show whether a person has the COVID-19 virus and the possibility of infecting others.
  • Pre-surgical testing: A COVID-19 test needed before a surgery or medical procedure is covered.

When Covid-19 Testing is not covered:
Independent Health does not cover Covid-19 testing for screening purposes, such as:

  • Test required by an employer, or to attend school (both students and staff)
  • To attend events such as weddings, sports games, concerts, camps and other entertainment, and for travel purposes (domestic and international, including Canada)
  • To participate in a sport or team activity
  • Public health surveillance

Read More


This short video explains the difference between diagnostic and antibody testing

COVID-19 Vaccine Information

Everyone aged 12 years and older is able to get the COVID-19 vaccines. It is one of the most important things you can do to stay healthy. We encourage you to get the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as you can.

We know you might have questions about the vaccine, so we are sharing this information and tips to keep you informed. Choose "Read More" below to learn information about:

  • Vaccine coverage
  • How to schedule an appointment
  • How to get your booster shot
  • Unable to leave home? In-home vaccinations available
  • Tips on scheduling a vaccine online
  • Vaccine safety
  • Other important vaccine facts

Read More

Common Questions

With the uncertainty everyone is facing, we know our members have many questions. We want you to rest assured that Independent Health’s coverage will be there for you when you need it.

Yes, we will provide access to members with pharmacy benefits who need their medications, including medication alternatives and early refills. Members can contact their pharmacy directly for assistance.

Some local pharmacies offer prescription delivery. We encourage you to contact your preferred pharmacy to see if home delivery is available. We currently offer mail-order for maintenance medications through ProAct and Wegmans Mail Order Pharmacy Services.

We are prepared to continue to provide access to members with pharmacy benefits who need their medications, including medication alternatives, in the event of a medication shortage.

If you are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms, call your primary care physician (PCP). Make sure you tell your PCP if you have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19. If you do not have a PCP and are thinking of going straight to a facility or hospital for care, we encourage you to call ahead and discuss your concerns with their staff first.

We understand this is a very difficult and uncertain time for all of us. If you are currently facing financial challenges, we will not terminate your coverage at this time. Contact us to work with you to develop a plan to help you pay your premiums so that your coverage will remain uninterrupted.

Independent Health has a limited supply of face coverings available for our members. Please contact Member Services to see if there are any available. Also, there are many online retailers selling face coverings, and the CDC website has information on how to make your own face covering.

Yes, as long as your plan* includes this benefit. At this time, the meal vendor will have the option of providing you with in-home delivery or the frozen meal option only. When the meal vendor contacts you to confirm and schedule your delivery of the meals, they will provide you with the method in which the meals will be delivered. If you select "in-home delivery" but it is not possible, you will be notified that your only option is frozen delivery. Your meals will then be delivered to you together and arrive in one delivery by a postal carrier.

*Benefit included as part of Independent Health’s Medicare Basic and Assure Advantage plans.

No, unfortunately we cannot cover these items for you.

Western New Yorkers who are shopping for a Medicare plan can make an appointment to meet in person with an Independent Health Medicare RedShirt at one of the following Medicare Information Center locations:

  • Cheektowaga/Depew: 620 Dick Road
  • Orchard Park: 3225 Southwestern Blvd
  • Tonawanda: 746 Young Street
  • Williamsville: 150 Tech Drive (Independent Health Family Branch YMCA)
  • Lakewood: 66 Chautauqua Ave

If you are retiring soon or turning age 65, go to our Find a RedShirt page to learn how you can schedule an appointment to visit one of our Medicare Information Centers. At this time, customer servicing representatives are not present at any of these sites.

Please note: For the safety of our guests and RedShirts, we are requiring everyone to have an appointment in order to visit our Medicare Information Centers, and masks must be worn at all times. No walk-in visits will be allowed. Safety and sanitation protocols, as well as capacity limitations, will be enforced at each site.

All other Independent Health buildings and locations currently remain closed to the public, including our Servicing Center and Medicare Information Center in Lakewood.

If you have questions about your Medicare Advantage plan, our RedShirts are available by phone, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Please call the number listed on your Member ID card. Or, you may visit our Contact Us page for additional numbers.

If you need to make a payment, you may do so online and choose to set up a monthly payment schedule, or to make a one-time payment.

Wellness Resources

We know that things are challenging and uncertain with the COVID-19 Coronavirus. Independent Health has identified some resources that may be helpful to you as you navigate this new normal.

Stay Informed

We encourage all members to create their own Independent Health member accounts in order to review their benefits and have access to key details related to their plan.