Here's how to get more free at-home COVID-19 tests

Minnesotans can now get four more free at-home COVID-19 tests from the state.

new rapid covid testing site in minneapolis
Shawn Baxley, VP of Field Operations at Vault holds up a test tube, demonstrating it's use at the opening of a new testing center at the Minneapolis Convention Center on Monday Nov. 9.
Kathryn Styer Martinez | MPR News 2020

Minnesotans can now get more at-home COVID-19 tests for free from the state.

Residents were previously allowed to order up to eight tests. People who received all eight can now get up to four more rapid antigen tests.

Minnesotans who have not received any free COVID tests can order up to 12 if supplies are available.

They can be ordered online or by calling 1-833-431-2053.

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Gov. Tim Walz said it's a way to make sure Minnesotans can still access free tests, after the federal government suspended its free at-home test program earlier this month.

“With the suspension of the federal mail order tests, Minnesota will continue to ensure access to free at-home rapid test kits for Minnesotans,” Walz said in a statement. “The free tests are just one part of the state’s comprehensive testing and vaccination program to provide readily available COVID-19 protection services across the state.”

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the shelf life for at-home COVID tests is about four to six months, so tests bought or received at the beginning of the year may be expired.

In-person tests are also still available at the state’s free  COVID-19 Community Testing sites.

Costs for over-the-counter at-home COVID-19 tests are now required by the Biden administration to be covered by health insurance plans and Medicare, according to a statement from Walz.

For accurate tests, it’s important to follow directions carefully and test at the right time, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.