Kroger gets emergency FDA approval for at-home coronavirus testing kit

Kroger, the nation’s largest supermarket chain, said it received approval to begin using at-home COVID-19 testing kits.

Kroger Health, the healthcare division of the supermarket brand, announced Wednesday that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted Emergency Use Authorization for its COVID-19 Test Home Collection Kit, which will be available to front-line workers across its stores beginning this week.

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Processing results of the at-home test will take about 24 to 48 hours on average, the company said. (Photo credit: Kroger Health)

Kroger said it plans to expand availability of the kits to other companies in the coming weeks, adding that it aims to process up to 60,000 tests per week by the end of July.

The Cincinnati-based company said the home collection kit needs to be performed under the supervision of a licensed healthcare professional via video chat. The patient then overnight ships their sample to a laboratory for processing, which Kroger says will take 24-48 hours, on average.

The kit, which will be provided free based on medical need, includes a nasal swab, transport vial, instruction sheet, prepaid shipping label and packing materials for return shipment of the sample to the Gravity Diagnostics laboratory, located in Northern Kentucky.

Kroger said the test results will only be accessible to the patient and shared with their organization if the person taking the test gives authorization. All results are reported to government health agencies as required by law.

The home collection kit will initially be available in the following states:

-New Mexico

Additional states will be added in the coming weeks, the company said.

In April, Kroger launched public drive-thru and walk-up COVID-19 testing sites. It has since administered more than 100,000 tests across 19 states, the company said.

The FDA has issued emergency use authorization for other at-home COVID-19 test kits, including one by the North Carolina-based LabCorp.

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