While it’s great that so many people are getting vaccinated right now, hundreds of thousands of Americans are still contracting Covid. This means we need to continue to be vigilant about masks, social distancing, and testing. Luckily, one company has made that a whole lot easier: As of this week, pharmaceutical corporation Abbott has released a new at-home Covid test.
The BinaxNOW™ COVID-19 Ag Card Home Test received U.S. Food and Drug Administration Emergency Use Authorization late last month, and now it’s ready for the public to buy. The test, which is sold over the counter and doesn’t require a prescription, works a little differently than those deeply invasive swabs you’ve seen if you’ve gone to a testing site. The kit includes a short nasal swab and comes with a comprehensive app that walks you through how to use it correctly to get accurate results. The app also allows you to save and store test results for the future and will put you in touch with a medical professional if you need help administering your test.
Once you take the test, you’ll find out if you’re Covid positive or negative within 15 minutes, but Abbott recommends taking two tests at least 36 hours apart within the same three-day period to get the most accurate results.
As for where you can pick it up, the kit is currently available online (Buy on CVS, $23.99) and will be in Walmart, Walgreens, and CVS stores nationwide by the end of this week. It may be better to try to pick up a test in person though since it’s sold out on many retailers’ sites due to the launch.
Just note that this at-home Covid test doesn’t check for any other viruses, and it doesn’t take the place of getting a vaccine. And let’s keep wearing those masks in the meantime, too! Not only are they great for preventing Covid, but they may actually keep your seasonal allergies at bay this year as well. Talk about working double duty.
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