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Same addresses at apartments and dorms leading to difficulties getting free federal COVID-19 tests

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Posted at 10:32 PM, Jan 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-19 22:32:57-05

INDIANAPOLIS — The federal government is providing every home in the United States with four free at-⁠home COVID-⁠19 tests.

A website to order those tests launched this week, but many still have a lot of questions about the rules of this program.

MORE: How you can get free at-home COVID-19 tests from the US government

For Michelle Lidy, ordering her four free at home tests was simple.

"I got online, it was real easy for me to do them to my home," said Lidy.

It's a different story for her daughter Lindsey who lives in a dorm at Ball State.

"Every way I tried to manipulate her address, I've sent her all kind of packages [and] regular postage through the mail and for some reason I could not get this to go. I started talking to some other parents in some chat groups and they were having the same issue at Ball State that they are not able to get those tests to their kiddos," said Lidy.

For some people who share the same address in apartment complexes or dorms, access to their tests hasn't been easy.

Viewers have reached out to WRTV frustrated and confused. We took those concerns to the United States Post Office.

“The Postal Service is seeing very limited cases of addresses that are not registered as multi-unit buildings which could lead to COVID test kit ordering difficulties. This is occurring in a small percentage of orders," USPS said in a statement to WRTV.

For those facing this problem, USPS encourages you to file a service request or call 1-800-ASK-USPS.

"I am hoping that the White House is already sending a chunk of those to universities that have on-campus housing," said Lidy.

Lidy is hoping a solution for those with the same address is found soon.

The Marion County Public Health Department says, while these free COVID-19 tests are helpful, there are other options.

"I know the administration has bought more tests as they become available and will become available. You can also purchase at home tests from Walgreens or CVS if you can find them and submit those for reimbursement with your insurance company," said Madison Weintraut with the Marion County Public Health Department.

Weintraut says due to the current surge, the department is seeing an "incredible" amount of people getting tested.

"With that volume of people coming in, we are getting more tests than our labs can churn out on a regular basis, so it's taking about 48 hours [for results]. In the meantime, while you are waiting on those tests, continue to quarantine," Weintraut said.

MORE: White House to give away 400 million N95 masks beginning next week