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Mail-Order COVID Tests Available Again in US

Every household can order four more test kits starting today.

As the COVID-19 pandemic has gotten mostly under control in the United States, certain aspects of the federal COVID response program have been dialed-down or dismantled. One of these aspects is the free set of at-home rapid COVID tests that US citizens could order through the mail. However, as the holidays begin and cases tick up, the government has decided to go for a better safe than sorry approach and restore this service.

Starting today, December 15, all US households can order a fresh round of at-home COVID test kits from the government’s official website. This service is completely free, and any tests that are ordered today are expected to ship by December 19. Government officials are urging citizens to test themselves if they are experiencing COVID symptoms and to consider postponing or cancelling holiday plans and family visits if they are sick.

“COVID cases are rising across America as folks gather for the holidays,” US President Joe Biden said on Twitter. “That’s why, starting today, every household can order 4 free COVID tests to be shipped straight to your door.”

“We know that the virus will circulate more quickly and easily as folks gather indoors for the winter holiday season,” an anonymous government official told NPR.

Besides tests, the federal government is also putting plans in motion to make vaccines, antigen tests, and the COVID treatment Paxlovid widely available to all citizens for the duration of the winter season.

“We are a few years into this pandemic, and we are prepared for this moment,” the official said.

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