The unlikely place to find home COVID-19 tests
If you’ve tried to buy a houseat a nationwide drugstore chain in the past few weeks, you’ve probably written off. It won’t be any easier anytime soon either, as schools are once again welcoming students for in-person learning while the Omicron variant – fueling increased demand for regular testing and further straining testing supplies.
But some savvy consumers have found thatare available from an unlikely source: the telemedicine company Ro. When it was founded in 2017, under the name Roman, the company marketed itself as a men’s healthcare company providing discreet treatments for conditions such as erectile dysfunction and hair loss.
Driven by Omicron, the rate of COVID-19 cases has increased in the United States, with the number of positive cases peaking since the start of the. The seven-day average of new cases has climbed to nearly 340,000 from 187,000 a week ago, according to data from TD Securities.
Therefore, all varieties of COVID-19 home testing on the CVS Pharmacy website are currently sold out. Abbott’s BinaxNow Kit, Quidel’s QuickVue Home Test Kit, Orasure’s Inteliswab Rapid Test Kit, and the FlowFlex version are also all sold on the Walgreens website.
Tracking the availability of Nowinstock.net products, which does the job for consumers, also indicates that nearly all varieties of COVID-19 home testing are exhausted in the vast online retail landscape. COVID-19 testing is among the hottest and most difficult things to secure right now, alongside video game consoles like Microsoft’s Xbox, Sony’s Playstation, and Nintendo’s Switch.
Visit Ro’s website today and you can purchase up to 12 Intrivo Diagnostics On / Go COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Self-Test Kits per transaction. The only catch is that at $ 30 for two tests, the kits are slightly more expensive than varieties currently unavailable, like the BinaxNow Antigen Self-Test Kit from Abbott Labs, which when in use. stock, costs $ 23.99 at CVS Pharmacy.
Ro co-founder and CEO Zachariah Reitano said the On / Go test kit was among the company’s top three most requested products and services over the holiday season. Unlike other healthcare companies, including pharmacies, she is confident in her ability to keep tests in stock and serve consumers during peak times.
âOur patients kept asking for tests and we partnered with the manufacturers of the On / Go test to provide them,â said Reitano. “They invested heavily in manufacturing capacity even as cases fluctuated in the potential case that there was a much more contagious variant that spread quickly.”
Growth of distribution centers
Ro ended the year with 10 distribution centers across the United States, down from just three earlier in the year, allowing for rapid delivery of urgent tests.
âWe brought in pharmacists and pharmacy technicians over the holidays and worked 12 to 18 hours a day to make sure our patients get their COVID tests on time,â Reitano added. He also doesn’t expect to run out of test kits anytime soon.
While shipping individual test kits is expensive for Ro, who pays for expedited shipping and only benefits when it ships tests in bulk, Reitano said the cost was worth it “to make sure that people get it as soon as possible “.
In the meantime, the test kits have helped Ro acquire many new customers who Reitano hopes will look to the company to meet their health needs as well. Ro now offers a range of offerings that go beyond men’s sexual well-being to include fertility services, mental health care and home diagnostic tests for both men and women.
âWe have started offering the tests to our members and other registrants,â said Reitano. “I hope that as we add new products and services, they will come to us and know that they are getting affordable prices and that we are not looking to take advantage of every moment.”