Free at-home COVID tests kits available in New Jersey

In this 2020 photo, COVID-19 test kits are laid out on a table at the testing site at 2600 Mt. Ephraim Ave., Camden, New Jersey. (Emma Lee/WHYY)

In this 2020 photo, COVID-19 test kits are laid out on a table at the testing site at 2600 Mt. Ephraim Ave., Camden, New Jersey. (Emma Lee/WHYY)

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New Jersey residents can now test for COVID-19 in the comfort of their homes.

State officials announced they have partnered with Vault Medical Services to provide free, in-home COVID saliva tests.

“This new program increases the availability and accessibility of testing, particularly for those who may not be able to get to a testing site,” said Health Commissioner Judy Persichilli. “This federally-funded, in-home alternative helps expand testing options for anyone who needs it.”

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The test can be requested at learn.vaulthealth.com/nj. No credit card information is needed, and an email address is not required.

Testing kits are sent through UPS next day delivery. Once received, the recipient will conduct the test through a zoom call with a “collection supervisor;” a requirement to get your results, according to the website. A prepaid next-day delivery package is provided with the kit, so it can be sent to a lab. Test results, which will come 24-48 hours thereafter, will also be shared with public health officials for contact tracing purposes.

Persichilli said testing is critical to help contain the virus.

“With cases rising and holiday gatherings and travel, you want to protect yourself, especially if you are not feeling well or believe you may have been exposed, even if you don’t have any symptoms,” she said.

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There is no limit on the number of tests that you can order. However, you cannot order a second test until you receive the results from an outstanding test.

New Jersey joins three other states in providing free COVID test kits.

Prior to the announcement in the Garden State, Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker announced the commonwealth would begin to distribute more than two million at-home rapid tests, starting with low-income communities.

New Hampshire and nine counties in Washington state announced their free at-home test program in late November. The kits are provided through the ‘Say Yes! COVID Test’ initiative, a cooperative led by the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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