Governor Newsom Announces Federal Approval of Medicaid Funding for Expanded COVID-19 Testing for Low-Income Students
First-in-the-nation waiver approved by Biden-Harris Administration to allow Medicaid funding for voluntary COVID-19 testing in schools
Sacramento, CA (STL.News) On the heels of announcing a $6.6 billion school reopening agreement with the Legislature, Governor Gavin Newsom today announced that the Biden-Harris Administration has approved California’s request to utilize Medicaid (Medi-Cal in California) funding to provide voluntary COVID-19 testing for low-income students covered by the program, further supporting schools in underserved communities to reopen for in-person instruction.
“I am grateful to our federal partners for approving our request to expand testing for low-income students to ensure schools can reopen safely in underserved neighborhoods that are bearing the brunt of pandemic hardships,” said Governor Newsom. “Our top priority is getting students back in the classroom to not only meet their learning needs, but also their mental health and social-emotional needs.”
Given the unprecedented nature of the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency, on December 24, 2020, the California Department of Health Care Services requested permission, using the federal demonstration authority, to provide COVID-19 testing in schools for Medi-Cal children in grades transitional kindergarten through 12.