How to avoid Covid testing and vaccination scams in France

Falling victim to a scam could mean paying unnecessary costs and putting your health at risk

6 October 2021

All Covid tests in France will be free until October 15 Pic: Noiel / Shutterstock

By Joanna York

An increase in Covid health scams in France has led the government to issue a reminder that testing and vaccination services are currently free in France for residents.

Health Minister Olivier Véran said: “Payment cannot be demanded for tests or vaccinations, and that is the case until October 15.”

This includes vaccinations with all validated vaccines (Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson) and all kinds of Covid tests including PCR, antigen or lateral flow, and blood tests.

Covid tests should always be taken by a health professional.

Providers that do ask for payment for tests and vaccinations are likely to be operating scams, and the consequences of this can be serious for patients.

Tests not taken correctly can cause injuries and can return incorrect results, including false negatives that can put the patient’s social circle at risk of catching the virus.

Test results may also not be recognised by health authorities. Since September 9, results from fraudulent tests (when identified) have been considered invalid, as are health passes using the results.

Patients who have incorrectly paid for a Covid test are advised to do another test as soon as possible.

They should also report the fraudulent test provider to the Agence régionale de santé in their region, which will conduct an investigation.

What are the rules for paying for Covid tests in France?

For French residents

Currently all Covid tests are free for French residents, and will be until October 15.

From this date, tests for genuine medical reasons will continue to be free for vaccinated people, and free on presentation of a prescription for non-vaccinated people.

However, so-called ‘comfort tests’ (often taken before travel or before social gatherings when the patient does not necessarily have any reason to believe that they have Covid) will no longer be free.

PCR tests will cost €49, and rapid antigen tests will cost €29.

Tests will continue to be free for children.

Read more: Covid tests for travel no longer free in France from October 15

For visitors to France

Non-residents in France must pay for Covid tests, unless they have a prescription or if they are considered a contact case and can present an Ehic (European Health Insurance Card) or Ghic

This means tourists have to pay for tests taken for travel reasons, with costs of €49 for a PCR test and €29 for rapid antigen tests.

Read more: Tourists in France must pay for Covid tests unless medically exempt

Related stories:

Fake bins, porn and Covid jab tax rebates: Alerts over scams in France

French nurses selling bogus Covid jabs for €300 each not ‘urban myth’

Resident or second-home owner in France?
Benefit from our daily digest of headlines and how-to's to help you make the most of life in France
By joining the newsletter, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy
See more popular articles
The Connexion Help Guides
Brexit and Beyond for Britons in France*
Featured Help Guide
What the Brexit deal means for UK residents of France, second homeowners and visitors in 2021 and after
Get news, views and information from France
You have 2 free subscriber articles left
Subscribe now to read unlimited articles and exclusive content
Already a subscriber? Log in now