Americans will be able to order free Covid tests starting next Wednesday, January 19, the White House announced Friday.
Half of the one billion tests ordered by the Biden administration will be available starting next week at a government-run website – https://www.covidtests.gov/ – with each household allowed to order four tests. The test kits will be delivered at no cost, with shipments beginning 7 to 12 days after the orders are made. A phone-based ordering system will also be rolled out for those without internet access.
The federal government has completed contracts to acquire about 420 million tests so far, The Wall Street Journal reports, with tens of millions of tests already in hand. Administration officials are confident they will be able to secure the full one billion.
In a fact sheet, the White House highlighted the need for frequent Covid testing and noted that there are multiple options for doing so. There are now more than 20,000 free testing sites nationwide, the White House said, while millions of free at-home tests have already been provided to community health centers. In addition, starting on Saturday, January 15, private health insurance companies will be required to cover the cost of up to eight at-home COVID-19 tests per person each month.