To ensure we are equipping our readers with all the information they need, we will continue to report on all travel, safety, and COVID-related news that could impact a Disney Parks visit.
Although we’re still waiting on a few things to return to “normal” in Disney World, for the most part, things are looking the way they did pre-pandemic. Restaurants, attractions, and gift shops have reopened, and most of the physical distancing and face mask requirements are gone. But there’s about to be another change related to COVID-19, and this one will affect the entire U.S., not just the Disney parks.
The White House has announced that the government will end the free at-home COVID-19 testing program this week. Find out more about why this program is ending and how you can get tests delivered before the end date here.
According to Wesh 2, the U.S. government will be ending the free at-home COVID-19 test program on Friday, September 2nd. The free at-home testing program started in January of this year and allows every household to order up to 16 free tests. The White House cited “a lack of funding and efforts to preserve supply ahead of an anticipated fall surge in cases” as the reason for the program’s end. The White House has blamed Congress for “failing to provide additional funding for the program.”
Recent waves of the omicron variants of COVID-19 may have contributed to the limited supply, as more people were likely testing for COVID-19 when those new variants emerged.
A White House official said, “We have warned that Congressional inaction would force unacceptable tradeoffs and harm our overall COVID-19 preparedness and response — and that the consequences would likely worsen over time.” The same official stated that the government will resume the distribution of free tests “if and when Congress allocates additional funding.”
If you still want to order some free tests before Friday, you have a few days to do that. Remember that each household can order up to 16 tests, so if you’ve already met that limit then you will not be able to order more. Head to Covidtests.gov or call 1-800-232-0233 to order your tests. You’ll need to provide a U.S. residential address and your email (if you want to receive shipping notifications).
Note that you may qualify to receive free COVID-19 tests through your health insurance. CNBC stated that “Most people in the U.S. also qualify for free testing or reimbursement for kits approved by the Food and Drug Administration through Medicare, Medicaid, or private health insurance policies.” So if you cannot order your free at-home COVID-19 tests before Friday, you may be able to still get them for free with your insurance.
We’ll continue to watch for more updates and let you know about any changes, so stay tuned with DFB.
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