BISMARCK — Residents of the Dakotas and Minnesota on Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance plans will not have to pay out-of-pocket charges for COVID-19 testing or treatment.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota and Minnesota and Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield, which covers South Dakota and Iowa, announced in news releases at the beginning of the month they are waiving all medical co-pays, deductibles and co-insurance charges related to COVID-19 treatment through the end of May. COVID-19 is the illness caused by coronavirus.

“Blue Cross wants our members to know we’re here to support them through this pandemic,” said Dr. Craig Samitt, president and CEO of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota. “We want to remove barriers to health care and offer peace of mind during this uncertain time. Blue Cross is here to help. We’ll continue to support our members and our communities throughout the duration of this crisis.”

A total of 251 North Dakotans, 1,154 Minnesotans and 393 South Dakotans have tested positive for the illness, as of Thursday morning, April 9.