Just over a year into the COVID-19 pandemic, and a LOT has changed thanks to scientists, doctors and nurses working hard to get us through. But the next big step in things returning to as normal as possible has arrived: at home COVID-19 testing!
While so many people are getting vaccinated - over 50% of adults in the US have received at least one shot of the vaccine - there will still be a need for COVID testing as we move back into the world. And now at-home COVID tests will be available at major retailers.
The Abbott Laboratories' BinaxNOW rapid tests do not require a perscription and were given emergency-use authorization by the Food and Drug Administration in March - the tests will ship to places like CVS, Walgreens and Walmart as early as TODAY!
The tests are done entirely from home and take about 15 minutes to show your results and will be sold for about $24 per test.
While this is definitely a great step forward - especially to allow people who may have concerns about whether or not they have COVID and need to know quickly - it is not the end all be all for the pandemic. Vaccinations are still very important! And healthcares workers are working hard to keep testing widely available to all communities.
I think about the options the rapid testing gives to some people though - such as people like me who are hoping to hold a baby shower this summer! If people are not vaccinated, they could do a rapid at-home test before the shower (or wedding, or birthday party or dinner with friends!) to make sure they are in the clear to be around other people.
Of course, vaccinated, negative test or not, perhaps what we have all learned is if you aren't feeling well, don't go to these events!
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