Comprehensive Guide to Medicare Coverage for the Quantiferon Gold Test

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The Quantiferon Gold Test is a sophisticated blood test used to detect tuberculosis (TB) infection. Unlike the traditional TB skin test, which involves an injection and subsequent observation for a raised reaction, the Quantiferon Gold Test is based on the measurement of interferon-gamma release in response to TB antigens. This test offers several advantages, including increased accuracy and specificity.

Medicare Part A Coverage

Medicare Part A primarily covers inpatient hospital stays, skilled nursing facility care, and some home health care services. Since the Quantiferon Gold Test is an outpatient diagnostic test, it falls under the coverage provided by Medicare Part B rather than Part A.

Medicare Part B Coverage

Medicare Part B covers a wide range of outpatient services, including laboratory tests, preventive care, and medically necessary diagnostic tests. Fortunately, the Quantiferon Gold Test is classified as a medically necessary test by Medicare when certain criteria are met. To qualify for coverage, the test must be ordered by a healthcare provider who determines that you are at high risk for TB infection or have symptoms consistent with TB.

Conditions for Coverage

To ensure Medicare coverage for the Quantiferon Gold Test, the following conditions must be met:

  1. The test must be ordered by a healthcare provider who accepts Medicare assignment.
  2. The test must be performed by a laboratory that meets Medicare’s certification requirements.
  3. The test must be deemed medically necessary by the ordering healthcare provider due to a high-risk factor or symptomatic presentation.

Coverage Limitations

It’s important to note that Medicare coverage for the Quantiferon Gold Test is subject to certain limitations. These include:

  1. Deductible: Medicare Part B has an annual deductible that must be met before coverage begins. For 2023, the standard deductible amount is $233.
  2. Coinsurance: After meeting the deductible, you are responsible for paying a 20% coinsurance for the test. However, if you have a Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) plan, it may help cover some or all of the coinsurance amount.

Alternative Coverage Options

In addition to Medicare Part B, there are other coverage options that may help with the costs of the Quantiferon Gold Test:

  1. Medicare Advantage (Part C): Medicare Advantage plans, offered by private insurance companies approved by Medicare, provide all the benefits of Part A and Part B, and often include additional coverage options. Some Medicare Advantage plans may cover the Quantiferon Gold Test with varying out-of-pocket costs.
  2. Medicaid: If you qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid, Medicaid may cover the cost of the Quantiferon Gold Test. Medicaid eligibility and coverage can vary by state, so it’s important to check with your state’s Medicaid office.


In conclusion, Medicare Part B covers the Quantiferon Gold Test when deemed medically necessary by a healthcare provider. By meeting the criteria and following the coverage limitations, you can benefit from this important diagnostic tool for tuberculosis infection. Remember to consult with your healthcare provider and check your specific Medicare plan to understand the coverage details and potential out-of-pocket costs associated with the Quantiferon Gold Test.

Key Points:

  • Medicare Part B covers the Quantiferon Gold Test when medically necessary.
  • Deductibles and coinsurance apply to Medicare coverage.
  • Consider alternative coverage options such as Medicare Advantage and Medicaid.
  • Consult with your healthcare provider and review your specific Medicare plan for coverage details.

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