- Starting next week, every US household can request four free at-home Covid tests.
- The initiative is part of a $600 million project to prevent a winter surge of cases.
- The program comes as some areas in the US see declining Covid infection rates.
From September 25, the Biden administration will offer free at-home Covid tests to all US families. By visiting the covid.gov website, households can request up to four rapid tests to be delivered by mail. This move, costing $600 million, is designed to counteract a potential winter spike in Covid cases, especially with the emergence of the Eris and BA.2.86 variants.
Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra mentioned the program's revival, emphasizing its role in providing Americans access to testing. Previously, the Biden administration had distributed over 755 million free Covid tests nationwide. This initiative began in early 2022 when test supplies dwindled and was halted in May after the Covid public health emergency was declared over. The tests provided are meant for use throughout the year, and the HHS has provided guidelines on checking their expiration dates.
Recent months have seen a rise in Covid infections and hospitalizations, though there's evidence that the latest wave might be plateauing. The situation remains uncertain, and experts are monitoring potential disruptions, such as staff shortages, even if the current wave seems milder.
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