Are foreign tourists more expensive for Covid-19 tests?

This summer, foreign tourists who wanted to be tested for Covid-19 had to put their hand in the wallet. Since July 7, they must fully pay for screening costs, except in the event of a medical prescription or formal identification of a contact case by the Health Insurance. In Paris, the fastest way is in pharmacies, in the form of an antigen test.

But at what cost ? On the site, it is specified that “without a medical nature, people coming for a temporary stay in France and falling under a foreign social security scheme must spend 43.89 euros for a PCR test and 25 euros for a test. antigenic. ” 20 minutes carried out the survey in various tourist districts of the capital, in order to determine if the costs of screening skyrocket in pharmacies when one does not have the Vitale card. By pretending to be tourists, we entered the stores with green crosses as well as some ephemeral screening centers in the direction of Rivoli, Saint-Michel, the Champs-Elysées, Bastille, Pompidou but also Austerlitz …

“There is no regulatory text”

First surprise, if one party does charge 25 euros for the antigen test, the majority do not hesitate to exceed this indicative sum. There are differences of the order of 4 to 5 euros (for a respective total of 29 and 30 euros). On the Champs-Elysées, the bill even amounts to 40 euros. In Rivoli, the test can cost 36 euros, here in the case of ephemeral test centers.

How to explain such differences? Asked about the question, Philippe Besset, president of the Federation of Pharmaceutical Unions of France (FSPF) declared: “For people not subject to health insurance, there is no regulatory text. The price is not blocked, neither more nor less. There are no constraints. “As for amounts greater than the price of 25 euros transmitted” for information only “,” the differences may be due to 20% VAT “, according to him, again for tests not reimbursed by Health Insurance, this which corresponds to differences of the order of 5 euros.

No response from the DSS or the DGS

This is, however, false. Contacted, the Directorate of Social Security (DSS) explains that the decree of June 1, 2021 which governs the payment of virological tests limits remuneration “including when the examinations are not covered by health insurance” . “Health professionals cannot therefore charge more than the fixed rates even if the tests are not covered”, specifies 20 minutes Carine Delpy, communications manager at the Social Security department.

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