WSU will not charge students for COVID-19 testing

Sick students should make testing appointment at Cougar Health Services; healthy students may go to National Guard site

EMMA LEDBETTER, Evergreen news editor

WSU will continue to offer free COVID-19 testing for students at Cougar Health Services and at the National Guard site.

Officials decided to bill students’ insurance for tests at CHS earlier this week, but reversed the decision because people believed there was going to be a fee associated with all tests, said Phil Weiler, WSU vice president for marketing and communications. 

Students who are experiencing symptoms or are feeling unwell should call ahead to make a testing appointment at CHS. Those feeling well who want a test should go to the National Guard site, Weiler said. 

WSU made this distinction between testing sites because symptomatic students could previously get tested at either location, which would not separate healthy and sick individuals, he said. 

Officials considered billing tests done at CHS to students’ insurance because only sick individuals would be tested there, Weiler said. Insurance usually covers the cost of tests for symptomatic individuals, but not necessarily for a healthy person who wants a test.

Weiler said most WSU students have health insurance, but not all do. 

Many people thought this meant WSU was charging a fee for testing, Weiler said. Because of this, the university will cover all costs associated with tests. 

“We don’t want any kind of barriers to people getting a test, particularly if they’re feeling sick,” Weiler said. 

As of Wednesday, 10,688 students had been tested at both locations. Each test costs the university about $100, Weiler said.