Flint, MI—Flint residents, alongside every household in the U.S., are eligible to receive four free at-home COVID test kits delivered right to their door.

The federal program officially launched Tuesday, Jan. 18, and is part of the Biden Administration’s efforts to increase testing supply amid a nationwide COVID surge.

“To help ensure Americans have tests on hand if a need arises, the Biden Administration is purchasing one billion at-home, rapid COVID-19 tests to give to Americans for free,” a White House brief stated.

The tests are self-administered, rapid antigen tests and deliver results within 30 minutes. They work on vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals and can be taken anywhere. Each is FDA authorized but individuals will not be able to select a brand.

How to Order  

1. Visit https://www.covidtests.gov and select “Order Free At-Home Tests.”

2. You will be redirected to a USPS order page to fill out your shipping information. Be sure to provide an email for shipping updates.

3. Once complete, select “Check out now.” You will not be charged.

The test kits should ship within 7-12 days, according to the website.

Orders are limited to four test kits per residential address, including those living in large, multigenerational households.

For those who do not have internet access, the White House is working on a call line so orders can be placed over the phone.

When to Take an At-Home Test

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, individuals should test:

  • If they begin having COVID-⁠19 symptoms like fever, sore throat, runny nose, or loss of taste or smell.
  • At least five days after they come into close contact with someone with COVID-⁠19.
  • When they’re going to gather with a group of people, especially those who are at risk of severe disease or may not be up to date on their COVID-⁠19 vaccines.

What to Do if You Test Positive

The CDC has several guidelines to follow for those who test positive regardless of vaccination status. If you test positive you should:

  • Quarantine for five days.
  • End isolation if you are symptom-free after the fifth day.
  • However, if you were severely ill with COVID remain isolated for at least 10 days.
  • Once isolation ends, wear a mask in public and avoid traveling for at least 10 days.

Carmen Nesbitt is a journalist with diverse experience in news reporting and feature writing. She wrote for Hour Detroit and SEEN Magazine before joining the Flint Beat news team as an education and public...

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