Covid US: Biden administration officials warn delivery of new test kits could take 7-12 days


Good timing, Joe! Biden reveals 1 billion at-home COVID tests will be available from January 19 – but delivery will take up to 12 DAYS – longer than the isolation period for the virus

  • Americans can visit covidtests.gov to order their free tests
  • Limit of 4 per household
  • But it will take 7-12 days to ship them, the administration says
  • Early contracts were for warehouse firms, not manufacturers
  • Feds say they have contracts for 420 million tests
  • Biden first asked for 500 million, now says govt will provide 500 million more 


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The Biden Administration says it will start sending out at-home covid tests from a new government web site on Wednesday – but with a delivery window that could last longer than a typical case of covid.

The administration has contracted for more than 420 million home tests kits, a senior administration official told reporters on a press call Friday. The tests will be free to the American public, with each household able to order up to four of them. 

 But with current wait times, it will take between 7 and 12 days for shipment within the continental, the official said. The U.S. Postal Service will be providing first class package delivery.

‘We anticipate that that window will shorten as we get further along in this program,’ said the official.

Alaska, Hawaii, and U.S. territories may have to wait longer for ‘priority mail’ delivery.’

Those wait times may prove longer than some Americans are used to. A quick online search Friday revealed that Amazon.com could deliver a lawnmower by Monday, a holiday. Even in-demand at-home covid tests were available for delivery by Wednesday, the day the program goes live.

The White House announced the testing plan as new data showed the omicron variant is starting to burn out and the infection rate has slowed in 44 states over the last two days.

National case growth is slowing as well, with the daily case average stagnating around 786,000 after rocketing in recent weeks.

President Joe Biden said this week the administration would be sending out 500 million covid tests on top of the 500 million already being ordered for distribution

BIDEN’S PLAN TO SEND OUT ONE BILLION TESTS: A BREAKDOWN

  • Website to order free tests will go online Wednesday January 19
  •  Tests will ‘typically’ ship within seven to 10 days of ordering
  • Households can order four each
  • Testing kits will be sent through the United States Postal Service in a First Class Package.
  • White House will ‘to ensure this program reaches our hardest-hit and highest-risk communities’.
  • Health insurers will cover eight at-home test per person from Saturday.
  • A family of four, therefore, will be able to have 32 tests covered.
  • 10 million tests are going out to schools to keep them open. 
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Americans can visit covidtests.gov to order their free tests.

The site was live Friday, but said ordering begins Jan. 19th.  There is no queue for advance ordering.

The kickoff date is the same day Biden plans to hold his first full press conference in more than 70 days. 

Officials have said they don’t expect problems with the web launch. The Obama administration dealt with months of headaches over the launch of its complicated Healthcare.gov web site. 

‘We’re taking our website launch very seriously. We didn’t start from scratch,’ said the official. 

One problem posed by the nationwide shortage of tests is that people who fear they got covid or had a close contact who tested positive may want test information to make decisions about their activities. 

The tests come as the U.S. has been hitting peaks for infections and hospitalizations amid the omicron variant. Some experts believe the waive could peak soon, which may mean many of the tests go out after it has passed. 

A free call line will help people who have ‘difficulty accessing the internet,’ according to the administration.

Additionally, as of January 15 the administration is requiring private insurance companies will to cover at-home COVID-19 tests.

According to an administration fact sheet, ‘In addition to this new program, there are many other options for Americans to get tested. There are now over 20,000 free testing sites across the nation, including four times as many pharmacies participating in the federal pharmacy free testing program as there were in January 2021, as well as federal surge free testing sites, with more free testing sites opening each week.’

Tests have also gone to community health centers, and schools were awarded a total of $10 billion for testing.  

People stand in line to receive 2 free at home COVID-19 Antigen Rapid test kits at the Gaithersburg Public Library in Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA, 12 January 2022. The Omicron variant of the coronavirus pandemic is the dominant strain in many countries as case numbers spike around the world

People stand in line to receive 2 free at home COVID-19 Antigen Rapid test kits at the Gaithersburg Public Library in Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA, 12 January 2022. The Omicron variant of the coronavirus pandemic is the dominant strain in many countries as case numbers spike around the world

People stand in line to receive 2 free at home COVID-19 Antigen Rapid test kits at the Gaithersburg Public Library in Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA, 12 January 2022. The Omicron variant of the coronavirus pandemic is the dominant strain in many countries as case numbers spike around the world

There has been a nationwide surge in demand for tests

There has been a nationwide surge in demand for tests

There has been a nationwide surge in demand for tests

The new web site starts taking orders next week

The new web site starts taking orders next week

The new web site starts taking orders next week

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