Great Resources On COVID-19 Home Testing And Treatment

In this post, I link to a number of very useful resources on COVID-19 home testing and treatment.

Here is an article from HuffPost on where to buy N95 masks.

  • 5 Places To Buy N95 Masks Right Now: Some manufacturers can’t get their masks into the hands of healthcare workers, so they’re hoping you’ll buy them instead. Casey Bond

This article is from the Associated Press.

  • Pfizer pill becomes 1st US-authorized home COVID treatment
    By MATTHEW PERRONE, 12-22-2021.

    • “An antiviral pill from Merck also is expected to soon win authorization. But Pfizer’s drug is all but certain to be the preferred option because of its mild side effects and superior effectiveness, including a nearly 90% reduction in hospitalizations and deaths among patients most likely to get severe disease.”
    • “The efficacy is high, the side effects are low and it’s oral. It checks all the boxes,” said Dr. Gregory Poland of the Mayo Clinic. “You’re looking at a 90% decreased risk of hospitalization and death in a high-risk group — that’s stunning.”

Here are articles from the Washington Post. The Post makes these articles freely available to everyone.

Here are resources from the FDA.

  • Coronavirus Disease 2019 Testing Basics. Content current as of:
  • Cue COVID-19 Test for Home and Over The Counter (OTC) Use. March 5, 2021
    • “Device: Cue COVID-19 Test for Home and Over The Counter (OTC) UseEUA Number: EUA210180
      Company: Cue Health Inc.
      Indication: Qualitative detection of nucleic acid from SARS-CoV-2 in anterior
      nasal (nasal) swab specimens collected with the Cue Sample
      Wand. This test is intended for use in adults (self-swabbing) or
      children ≥2 years of age (swabbed by an adult) with or without
      symptoms or other epidemiological reasons to suspect COVID-19.
      The Cue COVID-19 Test for Home and Over The Counter (OTC)
      Use is authorized for non-prescription home use.”

Here is an article from the New York Times. I have excerpted from the article.

  • A Message From Britain on Using Rapid Tests. Dec. 23, 2021, 5:00 a.m. ET.
    • By Dr. Alan McNally
    • “Dr. McNally is a professor in microbial genomics at the University of Birmingham in Britain, where he set up mass PCR and rapid testing capacity for students. He also helped lead one of the British government’s first coronavirus testing centers.”

All that follows is from the above resource.

Since 2020, Britain has used rapid at-home antigen tests to help combat the spread of the coronavirus that causes Covid-19. Today, these tests are widely available for anyone who wants them, free of charge (though there have been shortages during the Omicron surge). People in Britain are encouraged to use them regularly and before attending events like games or concerts.

Rapid tests are important for managing this pandemic. But they require a nuanced understanding of what they are good for and how to best use them.

A common question is how accurate these tests really are. The data is now clear, including from my own research, that these tests are excellent at detecting people who are contagious. However, these tests do not always pick up the very earliest stages of an infection, before people develop symptoms, or the later stages of an infection, when symptoms have passed. But it’s important to understand that these very early and very late stages are when people are far less likely to be infectious and able to spread the virus to others.
So why is there still such rampant transmission of coronavirus in Britain, given that every person in the country has unlimited access to these tests?
Because rapid tests are excellent at confirming when a person is in a contagious stage of infection, but don’t perform well at identifying people in the very early stages of an infection, how they are used is incredibly important. People in Britain are encouraged to use these tests up to 24 hours before doing an activity. But having a negative rapid test does not necessarily mean that you are not infected with coronavirus. A negative test means you do not have levels of the virus that make you infectious at the very moment you took the test. This can change in a matter of hours if someone is in the early stages of an infection. That’s why you should not rely on a negative rapid test for a week’s worth of events.
Widespread use of rapid tests is still a really good thing.
The tests will successfully detect people who are infectious when they take them and who could spread the virus.
If rapid tests are used immediately before an event, like a holiday gathering, they can lower risk of infections and make gatherings safer. Using rapid tests regularly should become a social norm.
But leaders need to make sure people understand what a negative rapid test result means. You may not be infectious in that moment, but you may still have an infection and could be contagious later. It means you should still exercise caution to prevent spreading the coronavirus. If you want to maximize the benefits of rapid testing, take your test immediately before going out, not the day before.



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