JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – As millions of Americans await the arrival of a COVID-19 vaccine, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration this week approved an at-home COVID-19 test that can be purchased over the counter.
The LabCorp Pixel COVID-19 test home collection kit will be available for purchase to anyone age 18 or older. Like the tests performed at public testing sites, the kit uses nasal swabs. This self-collection kit can then be sent to LabCorp to determine if someone is positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by novel coronavirus.
If you test positive or the results aren’t clear, LabCorp will call you. Otherwise, you can find out your status by entering your email address into an online portal. The expected turnaround for results is one or two days.
“The kit can help individuals understand their COVID-19 status and make decisions about when self-isolation or quarantine might be necessary,” the FDA said of the product.
It’s worth mentioning that this product does not detect antibodies or immunity.
There is so much demand for at-home tests that the kits are currently reserved for those who are experiencing symptoms, have been exposed to someone with the virus or have recommendations from a health provider.
These test kits cost $119 out of pocket, but there are no upfront costs if LabCorp can bill your insurance carrier or if you’re uninsured but can access public funding. Currently, the test is available on LabCorp’s website, but an FDA emergency use authorization means it will potentially be available in stores at some point as well.