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How at-home COVID-19 tests work

Amazon, Kroger and Walmart are selling discounted at-home COVID tests for next three months.

INDIANAPOLIS — To help stop the spread of COVID-19, President Joe Biden said at-home rapid tests would be available at-cost through certain retailers.

Amazon, Kroger and Walmart are selling discounted at-home COVID tests for the next three months.

At Kroger and Walmart, the cheapest test 13News found is Abbott's BinaxNOW COVID-19 Antigen Self Test. At Walmart it's $14 and Kroger, $16.

For that price, two tests come in a box. They are meant to be taken by the same person days apart.

The results are done in 15 minutes, according to the directions. 

How does the rapid test work?

First, wash your hands and remove the test card touching only the sides.

There are two openings on the test card. In the top one, carefully include six droplets of the solution.

Unwrap the swab and then test both nostrils. 

After you are done, put the swab into the test cards bottom opening, turning it three times.

Carefully close the test and wait 15 minutes. The directions add that you should not read it after 30 minutes. 

Two pink or purple lines, even if it is faint, means it is positive.

The BinaxNOW COVID-19 Antigen Self Test is authorized by the FDA under an emergency use authorization. 

Experts say the tests are pretty accurate, but that people should still monitor themselves.

As for Amazon, they say they can't control what people charge for COVID-19 rapid tests. As a result, they are waiving referral fees.

Other tests

Amazon is also selling its own COVID-19 test at cost, $36.99.

This test, however, is not a rapid test and needs to be sent off to a lab. 

The PCR test requires you to collect a sample from your nose, package it and pop it in the mail.

Results are uploaded to your profile within 24 hours. This test is FDA authorized.

Which test should I buy?

It depends on what you need it for.

If it is for travel, find out what type of test results the country or destination requires.