COVID-19 testing a hot ticket holiday item in the Kansas City-area

COVID-19 test
Posted at 3:38 PM, Dec 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-21 18:16:21-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The most sought-after item this holiday season might just be a COVID-19 test.

"All the CVS and Walgreens don't have appointments available, I'm guessing because of the holidays and so I just had to Google COVID testing near me," said Ariel Griffin, who was seeking a COVID-19 test.

Ahead of the holidays, health departments across the Kansas City area are reporting an increase in demand for testing.

"This is strictly for a family gathering where we have one college student that came home and another one that's working," Kathy Smith, who was also seeking a test said. "We'll have about 10 people and we just thought it was a prudent thing to do because we have one family member in the hospital with a broken hip."

Whatever the reason, testing is up along with the percent positivity rate in some counties.

In Eastern Jackson County, testing went up by almost 35% and the percent positivity rate, over 75% in the last month.

"If you have symptoms, certainly get tested," Dr. Cameron Webb, the White House COVID Task Force Sr. Advisor, said. "That's true whether it's right before the holidays and you're going to visit with family or any random day of the week."

Securing an available appointment at a COVID-19 testing site in the metro might be difficult, but tracking down an at home COVID-19 test could be even more difficult to come by.

"At the start of 2021, there were zero at home rapid tests available and now we have 8 different brands of rapid at home tests that are available, and I know that in some communities they're still hard to come by," Webb said.

KSHB 41 News checked CVS, Walgreens, Target and Walmart on both sides of the state line for an at home COVID-19 test. Many of the stores were sold out or only had a few tests left.

"The at home tests are FDA approved, so there's a level of sensitivity that they have that is appropriate so that people know whether they have COVID," Webb said.

The price range for at home tests varies. KSHB 41 News found tests for as low as $12 and as much as $130.

KSHB 41 News has compiled a list of COVID-19 testing sites in the Kansas City area.