There are 8 tests for the novel coronavirus that you can take at home.
They work by collecting samples from the nose or mouth. Then, they’re shipped to laboratories, where a process called “nucleic acid amplification” finds the virus’ genetic material.
The hope of at-home testing is to get tests in the hands of people who might otherwise struggle to find tests; rural areas and ZIP codes with more people of color tend to have less testing sites per capita.
They cost anywhere from $0 to $150, and some of the companies accept funds from health savings accounts.
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Among the hundreds of tests out there for the novel coronavirus, just a handful have received emergency authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration to ship them to people’s homes.
With at-home tests, people self-collect their samples and ship them back to the testing company for analysis. Many of the companies have their own labs and tests, or partner with other groups to run the samples, according to the FDA and Business Insider’s reporting.
Over the past few months states have started reopening and testing supplies have increased. Even so, coronavirus tests may still be hard to find for many, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. There’s fewer testing sites in areas that are at least 75% people of color, and nearly two-thirds of rural counties have none at all, according to reporting by Axios and analysis by the nonprofit Surgo Foundation.
At-home testing could make getting checked for coronavirus more accessible for those groups. They’re also useful for people who feel sick and don’t want to infect others, or are similarly afraid of getting infected by visiting a testing site or clinic.
People seem to be taking these companies up on their at-home options. Testing company Everlywell has shipped nearly 75,000 coronavirus tests since March, according to a spokesperson. Fulgent Genetics, another testing group, said it’s processing thousands of the tests per day.
LabCorp, the first healthcare company to get the at-home kits authorized, has run more than 4 million diagnostic tests since March, though that number includes those carried out at testing locations as well, a spokesperson told BI.
The at-home tests are similar in their sensitivity, or ability to detect coronavirus-positive samples, and specificity, or their ability to detect coronavirus-negative samples. To get tested, customers usually fill out some kind of questionnaire, get the testing kit, and ship it back for results.
The price of the tests can range, with some tests costing as much as $150. Under the CARES Act, insurers have to provide coronavirus testing at no cost to members, but many of them are not doing so, healthcare executives told BI.
Here are the eight emergency authorized coronavirus tests you can get at home.
How at-home coronavirus tests work
Unlike antibody tests, which measure for the body’s immune response to the virus, these “diagnostic,” “viral,” …read more
Source:: Business Insider