As long lines surge at COVID-19 testing sites, many Americans are turning to at-home testing kids. But how accurate are they? Inside Edition’s Lisa Guerrero tested kits from three different brands: Hims & Hers, Vitagene and Let’s Get Checked.
“This one wants saliva — a lot of saliva,” Guerrero said of the Hims & Hers test. The instructions say to first register the kit, which became a problem when the bar code was invalid and wouldn’t register.
The Vitagene test kit also collects saliva.
“There is a little funnel at the top that helps you get the saliva out," Guerrero said. Four minutes later — mission accomplished.
With the Let’s Get Checked home test, which requires a nasal swab, Guerrero was instructed to first schedule a UPS pickup. Guerrero tested both nostrils, which took 10 seconds each. She packed it in a prepaid biohazard bag and left it on her doorstep for pickup.
The Let’s Get Checked results came back within 48 hours. It was negative.
The Vitagene test was mailed Tuesday afternoon and Guerrero received an email Friday saying that the kit was received and to allow three days for processing.
Dr. Oz also looked into home test kits on his show.
"I think the at-home tests are quite safe. Are they as good as a nurse putting a swab down the back of your throat and getting a perfect sample, which is immediately run? Hard to say. But when you're talking about success rates of over 95%. It's hard to beat that."
In a statement to Inside Edition, Hims & Hers said there was a temporary technical miscommunication with their laboratory partner that impacted the processing of a small number of tests. The issue was resolved quickly and all kits are now able to be processed, the company said.