Local residents wondering when their free at-home COVID test kits will arrive

PITTSBURGH — In January, as COVID cases soared, the federal government announced that it would send four free at-home test kits to each American household. But now, as weeks pass viewers are beginning to wonder, “When will they get theirs?”

“They had no idea when [the kits] would be coming in,” said Steven Lightner, an Irwin resident.

Steven Lightner said he requested his free COVID-19 test kit on Jan. 18 and received confirmation that it would ship in seven to ten days but now says he hasn’t received it.

“I’ve never received the tracking number, and I contacted the local post office,” said Lightner.

Who shared, “The post office was just starting to receive about 12 packages a day,” said Lightner.

The postal service confirmed tests are shipping on schedule, and in a statement, said:

“The Postal Service ships the tests out as quickly as we receive them. We’ve seen more than 60 million households request tests […] this is huge demand and we are making incredible progress,” said Dave Partenheimer, manager of media relations for the United States Postal Service

But Lightner still has concerns.

“I have no idea where they’re being stored, and the post office can give me no clear answers,” said Lightner.

Health experts who spoke with Channel 11, said if the tests were stored in a cool, dry location and don’t appear opened, it should be OK.

“You expect the promise made by the government to be kept,” Lightner said.

Allegheny County Health Department said a general rule of thumb is that test kits should be stored between 36 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit and at room temperature before use.