Free At-Home Test-Ordering Now Available; Watch Out for Fake Tests From Other Sources
By Joey Berlin

As millions of people scramble to get their hands on COVID-19 tests and the Biden administration opens its online ordering for free at-home tests, federal authorities are warning people to look out for fake diagnostic tests.

With the spread of the omicron variant creating a renewed run on testing, it’s a good time for physicians to be extra-vigilant about exploring testing options and to encourage their patients to do the same.

Earlier this month, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) posted a blog offering tips on avoiding fake testing products. FTC’s tips include:

  • Make sure the test you’re purchasing is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) using FDA’s list of tests approved for home use;
  • Check out a seller before you buy by searching online for a website or company plus words like “scam,” “review,” or “complaint”; and
  • Pay by credit card so you can dispute the charge if you never get your order or the product is not as advertised.

FTC asks anyone who suspects a “scam seller or bogus test” to report it using the commission’s website.

The U.S. Department of Justice also asks people to report COVID-19 fraud, including testing-related fraud, through its website or by calling the National Center for Disaster Fraud Hotline at (866) 720-5721.

The Biden administration program is allowing every home in the U.S. to order four free at-home tests (one order per household), which will usually ship in seven to 12 days. The orders will begin shipping late this month, according to the U.S. Postal Service.

For reputable testing sites, visit the Texas Department of State Health Services webpage.

Last Updated On

April 05, 2022

Originally Published On

January 18, 2022

Related Content