CHEYENNE — Gov. Mark Gordon has made free, at-home COVID-19 testing available to Wyoming residents.
The saliva test is administered by Vault Health and allows residents to get results at home without needing to visit a health care provider, according to a news release. Wyoming has purchased 75,000 tests and could obtain additional tests, if needed.
The program will supplement currently available testing options that include some public health departments, private health care providers, hospitals and some pharmacies.
The governor is utilizing Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funds for the testing program. The White House has said that expanded testing will greatly improve Wyoming’s ability to track the epidemic, particularly when activities move back indoors.
“This at-home, noninvasive testing option is another tool to help Wyoming slow the spread of this virus,” Gordon said in Wednesday’s release. “It’s one more way we can help protect our vulnerable populations, keep businesses open and make sure our hospital beds are available to those who need them.”
To take advantage of the free testing, visit https://www.vaulthealth.com/covid and order a collection kit. The $150 testing fee is waived for all kits shipped to a Wyoming address, and all shipping is prepaid.
The saliva is collected during a supervised, online telehealth visit with a Vault test supervisor, which requires an internet connection. Results are reported within 48 hours of when the sample arrives at the lab. More information about Vault testing is available at a dedicated Wyoming Department of Health web page, https://tinyurl.com/wyohometesting.
Wyoming businesses and community organizations are also encouraged to take advantage of the program via a registration process for participants. That program is expected to launch shortly, according to the governor’s office.
A surge that began four weeks ago has seen active lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases rise to 1,517 as of Oct. 14. Over the past 14 days, Wyoming has averaged approximately 119 new cases per day, and the percentage of COVID-19 tests with a positive result is 5%.
Wyoming has now recorded 6,914 lab-confirmed positive cases of COVID-19, 1,263 probable cases and 57 deaths. More than 198,000 tests have been completed by the Wyoming Public Health Laboratory and commercial reference laboratories.
As COVID-19 cases rise statewide, the governor and the Wyoming Department of Health continue to strongly recommend the use of masks in public settings where it is not possible or reasonable to stay physically apart. The WDH also continues to stress the importance of staying home when ill.
Wyoming’s public health orders have been extended without changes through the end of the month. The new orders can be found on Wyoming’s COVID-19 website, https://covid19.wyo.gov/governors-orders.