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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the status of this program?

The free at-home COVID test program was suspended on September 2, 2022, due to lack of funding from Congress.

Do I need to beware of “Free Test Kit” Scams?

Yes, scammers have been targeting Medicare recipients with a fake offer to get “free COVID tests.” They’re calling and running websites, online and television ads to try to convince people to give their Medicare information. But if you give them your information, they’ll bill fraudulent charges to Medicare. Read more here "FTC Consumer Alerts – Free COVID Test scam".

When will more tests be available to order?

If Congress provides funding to replenish the nation’s stockpile of tests, we will work to resume distribution of free tests through COVID.gov/Tests.

I ordered tests before September 2 – will I still receive them?

Yes, orders placed before September 2 will be fulfilled by USPS.

Who do I contact if I ordered my tests but they have not been delivered?

To get help with a delivery issue, please contact USPS.

When should I use my tests?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that you take an at-home test:

  • If you begin having COVID-⁠19 symptoms like fever, sore throat, runny nose, or loss of taste or smell, or
  • At least 5 days after you come into close contact with someone with COVID-⁠19, or
  • When you’re going to gather with a group of people, especially those who are at risk of severe disease or may not be up to date on their COVID-⁠19 vaccines.

For more on when to use at-home tests, see the latest CDC self-testing guidance.

My COVID-⁠19 Home Test Kits are about to expire. Do I really need to use them so soon?

Most COVID-19 Home Test Kits have received expiration extensions from the FDA. To see if your COVID-19 Test Kit has an expiration extension, see the List of Authorized At-Home OTC COVID-19 Diagnostic Tests. For additional COVID-19 Home Test Kit information, visit the FDA AT-Home COVID-19 Diagnostic Tests: Frequently Asked Questions.