The expiration dates of the COVID-19 check should not as dependable as they seem on the field

For the latest news and information on the coronavirus pandemic, visit WHO and CDC on websites.

Have you ordered everything? 16 free COVID-19 tests from the federal government? If not, now is the time to do so. The Subvariant of Omicron BA.5 increased the number of cases over the summer and ordered home test kits from COVIDtests.gov takes just 2 minutes. But if you have already ordered yours rapid antigen tests at home, you’re probably wondering if the ones from the first round in January are still usable. If you find that your home COVID-19 test box has expired, does that mean you will get an inaccurate result?

Not exactly. Once a COVID-19 test has been approved and used for a year or more, the manufacturer can use its data and ask the Food and Drug Administration extend its validity period. From 22 home tests for COVID-19 listed on the FDA websitenine of them have had their terms extended since they were released, incl iHealthone of the most common home testing providers with early free shipping.

We’ll explain what the expiration dates for home-based COVID-19 tests mean and which expiration dates have been extended based on information provided by the FDA. To learn more, here how effective home tests for COVID-19 are are detected Option BA.5.

What does the expiration date of the COVID-19 test mean?

The expiration date on your COVID-19 test box is the last day the test is expected to be effective. Generally, the FDA allows home test kits with an expiration date of approx four to six monthshowever, this shelf life may be extended if the manufacturer finds more data showing that the tests are still accurate after the expiration date.

Should I use the COVID test kit after it has expired?

No Not recommended by the FDA using expired COVID-19 tests. Here’s why: Parts of a COVID-19 test can break down or malfunction over time, causing inaccurate or incorrect test results.

Again, it’s possible that at-home COVID-19 test kits may have an extended expiration date as more data is collected, but you shouldn’t use an expired test just yet. However, if your test kit box shows an expired date, check this FDA list extended expiration dates to see if it’s OK to use yours (more below).


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How do I know if my COVID tests have been expired?

If the manufacturer finds that the expiration date is longer than the expected four or six months, it can ask the FDA to grant an extension of the expiration date. When this happens, the manufacturer can notify customers of the new expiration dates. However, if you didn’t buy the tests through the manufacturer, you probably won’t receive any notifications.

Be sure to check with the FDA for the latest information on expiration dates for COVID-19 test kits Over-the-counter COVID-19 diagnostic tests at home webpage.

The FDA’s page for COVID-19 tests is listed alphabetically on that page, or you can use the search box to find a test directly. In the right-hand column of the table, the FDA indicates the expiration date of each trial and whether it has been extended. If the expiration date has been extended, the additional link will provide information on the exact expiration dates of the specific test lots.

The links below provide the lot numbers and expiration dates of the nine at-home COVID-19 tests that have been extended by the FDA. You can find the lot number of the home COVID test on the box, usually on a sticker with an expiration date.

We will continue to update this list if the FDA extends the validity of any other rapid antigen tests for COVID-19.

More about testing for COVID-19 can be found here how to pay for at-home COVID tests with an FSA or HSA.

The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions regarding a medical condition or health goals.

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