New barriers to COVID-19 home testing-holidays


Millions of home tests Coronavirus disease Is being put on store shelves, but is that enough for Americans who want to conduct self-checks before the holiday party?

Due to nearly a year of vaccinations, increased testing supplies, and faster options, the long queues for testing last year are gone. However, because many Americans have not been vaccinated, and there are reports that people who have been vaccinated have been infected with the virus, some people hope to conduct home tests before this year’s celebrations to provide additional protection.

Janis Alpine of Seattle is celebrating Thanksgiving with seven relatives, including her 97-year-old father. Although everyone is vaccinated, she plans to bring enough Abbott rapid test kits for them to use.

“I’m just used to testing now,” said the retired Alpine. “Although he was vaccinated, it may not be the best thing for a 97-year-old to get sick.”

After flying to Las Vegas and the East Coast for vacation, she began testing herself regularly in September. Since local pharmacies sometimes sell out test products, she usually finds five packs at a time.

After weeks of shortage, the chain stores are like CVS with Walgreens Now it is said that they have sufficient supply, and have recently lifted the limit on the number of purchases at one time. Driven by more than $3 billion in new procurement contracts and government assistance, test manufacturers have increased production. The home test usually exceeds $10 each time and takes about 15 minutes.

Although the situation has improved, health experts warn that the surge in winter can easily overwhelm the supply, especially if holiday gatherings and cold weather continue to cause new epidemics across the country. Moreover, they pointed out that the United States is far from conducting cheap or free extensive testing like some early European countries that adopted the technology.

Neil Segal, a health policy expert at the University of Maryland, said: “Unfortunately, we will still catch up next year or before demand subsides.”

White House officials said that by December, the United States will conduct about 200 million home tests every month, four times the number this summer. Despite this, spot shortages continue, especially in cities and suburban communities with high detection rates.

“I couldn’t find them for a long time,” said Denise Weiss, a retired musician in the suburbs of Philadelphia.

Last month, she grabbed six tests online and plans to share them with her family, especially her son and daughter, who are taking a flight and train home for Thanksgiving.

Market leader Abbott (Abbott) said it has resumed production of 50 million BinaxNow tests a month after slashing production when test demand plummeted last summer. Only a few home tests are widely used nationwide, and new tests will be launched, including from Acon laboratories.

CVS, Wal-Mart and Target will not be able to provide most of the products that will be supplied. Bulk purchases by federal and state officials will be distributed to community health centers, nursing homes, schools, and other government agencies.

Large employers and private universities are also buying millions of tests. According to the Biden government’s vaccine regulations for large employers, unvaccinated workers should be tested weekly from January.

Mara Aspinall, a health industry researcher at Arizona State University, said: “We are facing some challenges now, and the mathematics is not perfect.” “Although these tests on the shelf are great, people can feel personal Power, but we must also balance where they are going.”

Under pressure from the Biden administration, the Food and Drug Administration has been clearing home tests at a faster rate, authorizing 4 of the 13 tests now available in the past two months. The White House recently announced that the National Institutes of Health will help review the most promising institutions. This is an unusual move. But the company needs time to produce and distribute the test.

The United States has made a huge initial investment in vaccines, basically betting that broad immunity will contain the pandemic. But because approximately 60 million Americans aged 12 and over have not yet been vaccinated, experts say that every region in the United States is still vulnerable to outbreaks in states such as Michigan and New Mexico.

For testing advocates, the persistence of the pandemic emphasizes the need for rapid and extensive COVID-19 screening to detect infection quickly before it spreads-this is the method they have been advocating since the outbreak in the United States.

Countries such as the United Kingdom distribute billions of tests for free, and it is recommended to test twice a week. Researchers at the non-profit Caesars Family Foundation pointed out in a recent report that if the United States adopted this method for everyone 12 years and older, 2.3 billion tests would need to be performed every month. This is more than seven times the 300 million monthly tests that officials hope the country will conduct in February.



Source link