(WXYZ) – Demand for at-home COVID tests is skyrocketing as the Omicron variant continues to spread in the United States.
White House chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci said this particular strain of the virus is less likely to cause serious illness, but infects a large portion of the population, which Fauci says, could be a good thing as long as the virus does not mutate. again.
“It’s not that you’ll completely eliminate this disease. We’re not going to do that,” Fauci said. “But hopefully it will be at such a low level that it does not disrupt our normal social, economic and other interactions with each other.
The current outbreak has been incredibly disruptive to everyday life. People miss work due to close contact and tests are either inconvenient or hard to come by. A new government-run website called covidtest.gov promises to change that.
When it launches Wednesday morning, every American will be entitled to up to four free test kits. You can also purchase your own kit and be reimbursed by your private insurance company for up to $12 per test, for eight tests.
Senior health officials say this massive effort is needed over the next few weeks.
“The challenge is that the whole country is not moving at the same pace,” said Surgeon General Dr Vivek Murthy. “The omicron wave started later in other parts of the country, so we shouldn’t expect a national peak in the next few days. The next few weeks will be difficult.”
Some experts predict that covidtest.gov will likely see heavy traffic and this could lead to misfires. It’s also important to note that tests typically ship 7-12 days after ordering, which means you’ll need to order your kit before you experience any symptoms.