wsls logo

President Biden orders government to purchase half a billion at-home COVID-19 tests

Rapid tests flying off shelves ahead of the holiday weekend

With Christmas days away, many Americans are looking to get an at home COVID-19 test kit before holiday gatherings this weekend.

ROANOKE, Va. – With Christmas days away, many Americans are looking to get an at-home COVID-19 test kit before holiday gatherings this weekend. President Joe Biden addressed the growing need for these tests Tuesday.

”We’re going to continue to use the Defense Production Act as we did earlier this month to make sure we are producing as many tests and as quickly as possible,” he said.

Biden’s announcement of the government’s commitment to making at-home rapid COVID-19 tests more accessible comes at a good time. Many Americans are scrambling to find at-home tests ahead of this weekend.

10 News scoured five pharmacies in Roanoke for tests. Two were completely sold out, while another only had four tests. Surprisingly, one CVS and one Walgreens had more than 20, and Walgreens had more on the way.

The Virginia Department of Health was offering free COVID-19 rapid tests at all Roanoke public libraries, but all locations are currently wiped out due to high demand.

“VDH ordered more. They have been ordered and are due anytime so we’re eager for the supply to get replenished but that does point out what a popular program it’s been,” said RCAHP Communications Officer Christie Wills.

With upcoming help from the federal government, community efforts to distribute at-home testing will continue.

“We expect that as more tests come into the community we will definitely keep that partnership going. That’s turned out to be a very convenient place for people to get it. I would expect that any additional tests that we get coming in in the next couple weeks we will definitely be replenishing back through the libraries,” she added.

Whether you’re going through the drive-through testing or getting one to take at home, the government has vowed to make it more accessible and convenient.

“It’s a lot better than it was and we are taking even more steps to making it easy to get tested and tested for free,” said Biden.