Order at-home test kits
On January 14, the White House announced a new initiative to help ensure Americans have COVID-19 tests on hand in case they are needed.
In addition, the Eldercare Locator and the Disability Information and Assistance Line (DIAL) can assist older adults and people with disabilities with placing orders if they need additional help. They also can connect people to accessible instructions and help with administering the tests.
• People with disabilities can contact DIAL by calling 888-677-1199 or by emailing DIAL@usaginganddisability.org.
• Older adults can call the Eldercare Locator at 800-677-1116 Monday-Friday or visit the website to chat live or browse resources.
Both phone lines are staffed Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Eastern).
Insurance coverage of at-home COVID-19 tests
Along with vaccinations and protective measures such as wearing masks, maintaining physical distance, and hand-washing, at-home COVID-19 tests are an important tool for stopping the spread of the virus. There now are several no-cost ways to get tested and to obtain at-home test kits to have on hand in case they’re needed. For people who need to purchase additional tests, health insurance may cover the cost (and assistance may be available for those who do not have insurance). We’ve pulled together the basic details in this fact sheet.
Partnership opportunity: ACL's networks can get masks and test kits for older adults and people with disabilities
The Department of Health and Human Services is committed to ensuring that people at greatest risk from COVID-19 have equitable access to resources that can help prevent its spread. To that end, the Administration for Community Living (ACL) and the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) have been working together to help support the needs of older adults and individuals with disabilities. In this joint letter, ACL and HRSA announced an opportunity for the aging and disability networks to partner with HRSA-supported health centers and Medicare-certified rural health clinics to distribute at-home tests and N95 masks to people with disabilities and older adults.
HRSA’s program for distributing tests began in late December, and the mask program launched in January. Both programs are growing quickly and will continue to expand over the coming weeks and months. It is crucial that the health centers and rural clinics hear from our networks about the needs of the people we serve and our networks’ interest in partnering. This will help them accurately assess the needs in their communities and place orders to meet them as the programs and supplies expand.
To find a potential community health center partner, visit Find A Health Center. You can also see a list of health centers currently participating in the mask program here. (While there is not an online list of participants in the testing program, all health centers are eligible to participate.)