Can you still get free coronavirus tests in 2023? Here’s what you should know about your options.

after the weekend Labor Day travel Medium high Hospital admissions for COVID-19Many people are wondering where to get free coronavirus test kits in 2023, whether by mail or insurance.

The levels of coronavirus hospitalizations and deaths are currently still well below the previous peaks seen during past summer and winter waves of the virus, but they have been rising steadily since 2019. several weeks delusion and expect To speed up.

Health authorities are also tracking the spread of the disease Three new variants of COVID-19 all over the country.

Is the government still sending free coronavirus tests through the mail?

While the government’s program Send Americans free coronavirus tests It is no longer in operation, and there are still ways for both insured and uninsured people to get a free test.

If you still have tests saved from previous test letters in the mail, they may still be usable even if they’ve passed the expiration date on the label — but it depends.

While the FDA does not recommend the use of at-home COVID-19 tests after their authorized expiration dates, it says those dates may be extended with “additional stability data collection” and provides a list on its website.

You can check the Expiry Date column on the OTC Approved Home COVID-19 Diagnostic Tests List to see if and how the expiration date of your at-home (over-the-counter) COVID-19 test has been extended. Look for any expiration date New,” US Food and Drug Administration.

Do pharmacies offer free coronavirus testing?

Another option is free testing sites. At no cost Antigen and PCR tests Available to everyone in more than 15,000 locations across the country. This includes locations like CVS, Walgreens, and other pharmacies and clinics.

People looking for free sites near them can use the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Testing Locator website.

Some city and state health departments also have their own coronavirus testing programs.

For example, New York City has four locations for free rapid PCR testing in addition to the test available at all of the city’s public hospitals. There are also more than 200 locations around the city for free home testing, including public establishments such as libraries, recreation centers and food pantries.

The Virginia Department of Health launched a program in 2021 that will bring home test kits to libraries across the state. “Community members can obtain free test kits from participating libraries (library cards not required) and take the kits home to self-test for COVID-19,” says the department’s website.

Are you looking for information about your state? The CDC has a page that lists all state and territory health departments for quick access to their locations, where you can find the latest local information about testing.

Does insurance cover coronavirus testing?

Some special health Insurance plans may pay out To cover the cost of purchasing at-home coronavirus tests.

Walgreens, for example, has an online form for submitting pick-up requests for tests in which they submit an insurance claim on behalf of the buyer. However, many insurance plans will no longer cover at-home coronavirus tests as of May 2023, according to the pharmacy’s website.

“Call your plan for details,” the site advises. If your plan provides coverage, there may be cost-sharing and limits on the number of covered tests per person per month.

How long after exposure to a positive COVID test?

In order to get the most accurate results — and not to miss tests — it’s important not to get tested early if you don’t have any symptoms.

The CDC website advises: “If you do not have symptoms but have been exposed to COVID-19, wait at least 5 full days after your exposure before getting tested.”

However, if you have symptoms, you should get tested right away.

Alexander Ten contributed to this report.

(tags for translation)COVID-19

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