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Doctors share advice on how to use COVID-19 tests at home effectively

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – You can now order up to four free COVID-19 tests online for your household.

The process takes about a minute and are expected to ship at the end of January.

Each test is FDA approved, but it’s unclear what brand of rapid tests families will be receiving.

COVID-19 expert at Ascension St. Vincent Dr. Christopher Belcher and Medical Director of Infections Diseases at Franciscan Health Dr. Erika Kaufman West recommend that you carefully read the instructions first.

You can also go on the U.S Food and Drug Administration’s website to find a list of manufacturers to find test instructions.

Both doctors advise to take a test while you’re having symptoms for the most accurate results.

Or it’s suggested to wait a few days to use a test if you’re having mild symptoms or none at all.

“Around day five or so is a good day even if you don’t have symptoms to go ahead and test yourself,” said Dr. West. “At that point you should have become positive if you’re going to and that should be an accurate time to test.”

Dr. Belcher recommended that if you have any doubts about your results to visit a testing site.

“It’s nice to have a wipe down clean so you get it contaminated with anything else or your own secretions and you often need a timer so have your timer or your phone or something ready because many of the steps are time critical,” Dr. Belcher said.

Dr. West encouraged people to sign up for the tests so they’re readily available to use.