The Biden admin’s free Covid-19 quick test site is open for new orders. government page, covidtests.govcome for the first time between a lack of quick tests and the increase in Covid-19 cases was driven by the omicron variant. Now, almost two months later, anyone who ordered four tests can now order another four. This change means that a household can order eight free tests Total.
Covidtests.gov is part of the White House’s plan to buy and distribute 1 billion quick tests. The ultimate goal of the new testing initiative is to make it easier for people to find out if they have Covid-19 and, if necessary, isolate to limit the spread of the virus. Technically, covidtests.gov is slated to go live until January 19, but the government has released a “”beta stage“The site’s before that deadline, allowing more people to place an early test order. Within hours of its launch, the beta became the most popular government website with a long photo. Despite the site’s initial popularity, nearly half of the government’s first 500 million rapid tests failed to do so. has been declared at the end of February, so that means the site is taking in new orders.
This update represents an improvement over the situation at the end of last year, when quick tests were not only difficult to find but also expensive. For reference, the United States Postal Service delivered 6 million test kits on February 22 – a record number of tests delivered in a single day since the program launched in January. However, the Biden administration’s initiative has some caveats. First of all, each US household can only fulfill two test orders – regardless of how many people live in the household. And some people who tried to order tests have encountered Technical problems and delivery delayswhich means the best time to order more tests is still now.
Since quick tests are available again, you may have some questions about how to navigate the program. Let’s start with website basics.
So this new website allows you to order free Covid-19 tests. How difficult could it be?
This process is designed to be very simple. To order a series of rapid at-home antigen tests for your household, visit covidtests.gov, which explains that all people with a U.S. residential address (as well as those who live in foreign facilities) overseas military and military) are eligible to perform the tests.
Once you are on the homepage, click the bright blue “Order Free Home Test” button and you will be redirected to a special section of the USPS website. (USPS has partnered with the Department of Health and Human Services to help with the logistics of the new program, and you can also start your order through the USPS . website.) Fill out the form on the page by providing your name, shipping address and if you would like an email confirm, your email address. The page has a box with your order information, including a place for the dollar amount, but it doesn’t ask for any credit card information. The amount must remain at $0.00 throughout the order process.
Once you fill out that form, click the bright green “Pay Now” button and you will be taken to a new page with a USPS tracking number. If you provided your email address, you will also receive an email with the same confirmation number. If you live in continental United States, your tests will be shipped with USPS First Class Package Service. If you live in Alaska or Hawaii, in US territory, or at a diplomatic or military address abroad, your tests will be sent via Priority Mail. The site also has a FAQ section that explains how to track your orders and how to use quick tests once they’re delivered.
Don’t wait to order the tests. As tests can take some time to ship, the government recommends that people order tests on the website now, rather than waiting until they have symptoms or come into contact with someone who has symptoms. Covid-19. Hopefully everyone in the country will have a small stock of tests of their own to use when they need it.
Seems easy enough. What is catch?
There’s no way to catch it, but there are a few caveats you should keep in mind.
The biggest limitation of Biden’s free rapid testing program is the testing limit, and currently, there are no exceptions to this rule. Although eight tests seems to be enough for a small household, Quick tests work best when they are used consecutivelyand a person may need more than one test to catch a Covid-19 case.
To prevent the same household from ordering more than eight tests, the USPS website is designed to catch people who exceed the order limit. When the site first launched, this caused some people living in apartment complexes to receive an error message saying someone had placed an order to check their address. Because USPS only ships the rapid test kit to residential addresses, some people may receive an error stating that their address is listed as a business address in USPS profile and are not eligible for the free test.
If you experience these problems, double check that you include a specific apartment or unit number when filling out the order form. You could try entering the apartment number in both the first line of the address and the separate apartment number box. USPS also has a address book site which you can use to check that you’re entering your home address the same way USPS does on its records. If that doesn’t work, consider calling USPS helpdesk at 1-800-275-8777 or applying a service request.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters at a press conference in January. “We can’t guarantee there won’t be one or two errors.”
For those who do not have access to a computer or an internet connection, the government has also set up a phone line. This number is the number that the government vaccine hotline: 1-800-232-0233. The hotline is the only option for ordering free federal government tests without accessing the online portal. You can’t stop by a local post office and get the tests in person.
What options do I have if I need more tests?
In addition to ordering tests on the new government website, you can still buy rapid tests at pharmacies and online – and you can get a refund for them. According to new insurance guide enacted by the Biden administration in January.
If you are uninsured or rely on Medicare and need more than the tests provided by the federal government, you should seek out free tests from state or local organizations. Medicare is suppose to cover the full cost of Covid-19 rapid tests starting this spring.
If my private insurance covers rapid tests, how do I get a refund?
First things first: Save a receipt for any Covid-19 test you purchase. Also, exactly how you get reimbursed for rapid at-home tests depends on what insurance plan you have and where you buy the tests.
Some insurance companies have partnered with certain pharmacies so their customers can get tested without going through the reimbursement process. If your plan doesn’t do this, you should contact your insurance company for details on filing a claim.
Some insurance companies have made the claims process much easier than others. For example, if you have UnitedHealthcare, you can get a free quick test at any Walmart or Rite Aid pharmacy, as long as you have an insurance card. If you have Kaiser Permanente, you can file a claim through a website. If you have Cigna you can try send inquiry online or complete a more arduous process involving filling out paper form of return which must be mailed or faxed to the company. That Cigna reimbursement form is different from the ones you use for other claims.
Doing a quick test still feels complicated. When will things be easy?
The testing situation is improving, but it’s not perfect. There are still so many unknowns that have pushed more uncertainty into an already highly uncertain period of the pandemic. Even with this new federal government website, you don’t know for sure if your test will really come at the time you need it, or if you have enough testing to detect a Covid-19 case. when you are sick or not.
Still, covidtest.gov is a great opportunity to stock up on supplies while you can, and the new insurance benefits – if you’re lucky enough to have them – are better than paying full price for home tests. Regardless of how you do it, you’ll probably benefit from doing some quick tests around. And as the experts say, check in early and check in often. Everything will be fine.
Update, March 7, 2022, 4:30 p.m.: This story has been updated to note that people who have requested rapid tests can now order more tests.
Update, January 19, 2022, 10:30 am: This story has been updated to include more information about the USPS website and phone numbers for trial ordering.
https://www.vox.com/recode/22890296/covidtests-biden-free-rapid-test-website How to get free home rapid tests from COVIDtests.gov