You Can Order an At-Home COVID-19 Test on GoPuff
The saliva-based test will be delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less, with results arriving via a text and an email.
Getting tested for COVID-19 has become commonplace in our pandemic lives — so much so that Philadelphia boasts more than 50 testing sites plus a number of mobile clinics throughout the city. Now, area residents have yet another option for curbing the spread of coronavirus: a testing kit delivered right to your door.
The CDC currently recommends testing for folks who develop symptoms of the virus, were in close contact with someone with confirmed COVID-19, or were referred by their health-care providers. But while most testing options in the Philly region require some kind of interaction with another person, this at-home test option makes it possible to check for COVID while quarantining away from others.
The new saliva-based test offered by New York City-based testing platform Purlab is currently available for instant delivery through GoPuff, which means you can have the test on your doorstep in 30 minutes or less. The partnership, which officially began on December 18th, is a novel testing option. Purlab’s test — developed and run in collaboration with the RUCDR Infinite Biologics Lab at Rutgers University — is the first FDA Emergency Use Authorization-approved SARS-CoV-2 saliva test, and the partnership with GoPuff makes it highly convenient.
Using the test is simple: After yours arrives, create an account on Purlab’s mobile app or website in order to register your kit and monitor results. Then scan the bar code on the test tube, spit in the tube to the black line, and tightly screw on the cap. (In order to warrant accurate results, those latter two steps are very important.) Pack the tube in the pre-labeled, pre-postage-paid box, then mail it to the lab. You’ll receive your results via text message and email in 24 to 72 hours.
The FDA initially authorized RUCDR Infinite Biologics Lab’s at-home saliva tests under the Emergency Use Authorization policy put in place during the pandemic. However, at the time, the FDA said it “preferred tests based on deep nasal samples,” as opposed to the saliva-based tests, the accuracy of which is still in contention. In October, the Journal of the Chinese Medical Association published a study comparing saliva-based tests to the nasopharyngeal and throat swab tests and determined that saliva-based tests were “potentially promising and appealing,” while noting that the current data wasn’t peer-reviewed and that research on the topic is rapidly evolving.
According to Michael Cohen, president of Purlab, his company developed the at-home test to enhance the safety and efficiency of the testing process. “We wanted to save people from the potential exposure of needing to leave their homes to go to a clinic or testing site,” Cohen says. “Our test can be done in the comfort of your own home without the need for others to administer or supervise.” Moreover, Andrew Brooks, the chief operating officer and director of technology development at RUCDR, says saliva-based testing lessens result turnaround time and allows for broader screening, according to Rutgers Today.
Rafael Ilishayev, GoPuff’s co-founder and co-CEO, says the Philly-based delivery app teamed up with Purlab to promote test accessibility and convenience. “The health and well-being of GoPuff’s customers, employees, driver partners and the community is always our top priority, which is why we continue to identify new opportunities to give back and provide support,” Ilishayev notes. “Partnering with Purlab [allows us to] offer customers a new, faster and more convenient way to access COVID-19 tests.”
You can order Purlab on GoPuff for $129. The test is covered by most insurance carriers and is available for order nationwide.