Free COVID-19 rapid tests now available

Published 7:09 pm Tuesday, January 18, 2022

As of Wednesday, Jan. 19, Americans can start ordering free at-home COVID-19 rapid tests by visiting COVIDtests.gov. Every home in the U.S. is eligible to order four of the rapid tests, and orders usually arrive within seven to 12 days.

The new website is part of the Biden administration’s efforts to make COVID tests more accessible. Stores have recently experienced shortages of the rapid tests, particularly during the holiday season as travelers anxiously waited for negative results before embarking on their trips.

Last week, the Biden administration announced that private health insurers would be required to cover up to eight home COVID-19 tests per month for people they cover.

Those who use the COVIDtests.gov platform will be directed to a USPS registration screen, where they’ll need or enter their name, email and shipping address.

The website also offers resources for those who urgently need a test, are looking for another kind of test or need more than four tests.

The website says that the tests available for order can be taken anywhere, give results within 30 minutes, and work whether or not you have COVID-19 symptoms. Those who test positive are advised to follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s latest guidance on isolation. Those who test negative are advised to follow the instructions included in the test kit, and conduct another test within a few days.

COVID METRICS AT A GLANCE

Beaufort County’s total COVID-19 case count recently surpassed 10,000. Beaufort County’s COVID-19 death toll is 141, which is 1.4% of the total case count. As of Tuesday, health officials knew of 1,551 active cases among Beaufort County residents. Twenty-four county residents were hospitalized with COVID-19, and none of them were on a ventilator.
The county has recorded 2,165 positive cases since Jan. 1, 2022, the date used to mark the beginning of the Omicron variant outbreak.

Approximately 53% of Beaufort County’s entire population is fully vaccinated.  Approximately 11,000 Beaufort County residents have received an extra dose or a booster.