Federal COVID-19 website will stop shipping free tests due to lack of money

The federal government estimates that the COVID-19 testing website has shipped about 600 million test kits since its launch on Jan. 18. UPI Photo/File

August 29 (UPI) — After seven months of distributing millions of free home COVID-19 tests to Americans, President Joe Biden’s administration has said it will stop offering the tests this week.

Biden created a federal website in January where people could order up to four at-home coronavirus tests. He then authorized the Americans to order four more in March and May.

Free tests will no longer be available starting Friday, the White House said.

“Orders through this program will be suspended on Friday, September 2 because Congress has not provided additional funding to replenish the nation’s testing stockpile,” the administration said in a statement on the COVID-19 testing website. .

When Biden ordered the availability of the first home tests, the United States was in the midst of a sharp increase in cases due to the Omicron variant which caused serious disruption in the commercial aviation industry.

The government estimates that the website has shipped around 600 million tests since its launch on January 18.

“We warned that Congressional inaction would force unacceptable compromises and undermine our overall COVID-19 preparedness and response — and the consequences would likely worsen over time,” a White House official said. . CNN.

“Unfortunately, due to the limited funding we have to work with, we have had to make impossible choices about which tools and programs to invest in – and which ones to scale back, suspend or cut altogether.”

Some Americans can still get tested for the coronavirus for free through their private insurance, Medicare or Medicaid.

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