Health - Public Health News

Posted on: September 28, 2023

Washington State Department of Health No Longer Recommends The Use of Expired COVID-19 Tests

What to do with expired test kits? 

If you have an expired at-home test, check the FDA’s website to see if the expiration date has been extended before throwing it out.

Expired point-of-care and at-home COVID-19 tests should be disposed of immediately according to the manufacturer's instructions. 

Why did the guidance change?
Last year, The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) said it was allowable to use expired COVID-19 rapid antigen tests. This direction was based on the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) guidance. 

When the federal government declared the Public Health Emergency over, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) reversed its guidance and stated that expired COVID-19 tests should not be used. Therefore, DOH no longer recommends using expired at-home or point-of-care COVID-19 rapid antigen tests. 

The DOH now follows U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) guidelines for expired at-home COVID-19 tests. The FDA recommends using at-home COVID-19 tests only within their authorized expiration dates, as tests may deteriorate over time and provide inaccurate results.

For more info on COVID-19 testing in Washington state visit the DOH website.

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