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Despite new USPS program, local at-home test kits still sparse

Published: Jan. 18, 2022 at 6:40 PM CST
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PEORIA (Heart of Illinois ABC) - Multiple local pharmacies said their at-home COVID-19 tests were flying off the shelves.

They said they would sell hundreds within days, and restocking took weeks sometimes.

The CDC recommended taking at-home tests after close contact with someone COVID-19 positive or if you have symptoms. Many locals said they couldn’t find an at home test, others got lucky.

“I’ve been able to get the rapid test at home,” resident of Peoria Cheryl Miller said, “but if you need a PCR test, that’s another story.”

Preckshot Pharmacy said they’d been able to keep a steady inventory of the antigen rapid test throughout the pandemic. But it took some maneuvering and made the tests pricier.

“I have multiple suppliers and that’s how we’re able to stay on top of it,” Pharmacist and owner of Preckshot Pharmacy Corey Dolan said. “The demand has gone up, so it’s costing me more money to get them in, so we have to charge more.”

The $50 price tag for a box of two tests wasn’t a deterrent for the many people that came through the pharmacy. Partially because insurance companies were required to pay for eight at-home tests a month.

One woman said that she didn’t have two days to wait for a PCR test because she was seeing family

“I know these aren’t ask accurate especially with omicron but I want to at least get one of these going and then ill probably get a PCR after too just to be super accurate,” Elizabeth Groter of Chillicothe said.

President Joe Biden insisted testing was important in the fight against COVID-19. Starting on Wednesday, he began the roll out of half a billion at home tests, for free.

4 tests per home.

10 million tests a month will go to schools around the country. They’re also opening dozens of new federal testing sites.

Preckshot said they’re happy to hear about the plan but worried the test wouldn’t get into hands quick enough.

“I think people need to be preemptive and have them on hand before they think they need them and I hope they can get them out in a timely manner,” Dolan said.

The government predicted the at-home tests to take 7 to 12 days to deliver.

This link will take you to where you can order your test.

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