The tests are available at covid.gov/tests. (Dana Wormald | New Hampshire Bulletin)
The federal government is offering a third round of free COVID-19 tests just as cases and hospitalizations are increasing. The Biden administration announced Tuesday that each household can order eight tests at covid.gov/tests.
Households that did not take advantage of the first or second round of free tests may order additional tests. To do so, they must provide an email address on the order form; the link to request more tests will be in their order confirmation email from the U.S. Postal Service.
The tests can also be requested by calling 1-800-232-0233, though callers are warned of a long wait time. If you purchase a test at a pharmacy, store, or online, the covid.gov site includes guidance for seeking insurance coverage or reimbursement.
Tuesday, Health and Human Services’ COVID-19 dashboard said the state averaged 618 new cases a day over the most recent seven-day period. That’s a 14 percent increase over the prior seven-day average, the site said.
However, because not all positive tests are reported, health officials say hospitalizations and deaths are a better indicator of community risk. Hospitalizations have been increasing since early April, though not at the pace they were during the last surge at the start of the year.
On Monday, there were 41 people hospitalized for COVID-19 and treated with remdesivir or dexamethasone, Health and Human Services’ new definition of a COVID-19 hospitalization, and another 56 patients no longer infectious but still requiring hospitalization, according to the New Hampshire Hospital Association dashboard.
Deaths are also increasing slowly, from .4 over a seven-day average in early April to 1.3 on May 11, the most recent data available.
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