Consumer Diary: Don’t Be Fooled By Fake COVID Tests | Harlan Levy’s Consumer Journal

Our daughter told us last week that she tested positive for COVID. We have been in close contact with her throughout the weekend. So, were we infected despite our booster shots? What about the persistent uncontrollable cough I had developed?

We had two home tests and I tested negative. My wife has not been tested because she is feeling fine.

Then last Friday I went to my doctor concerned about my persistent cough and was tested twice, once with the antigen test, which was negative, and the more accurate PCR test, which also gave a negative reading.

I then visited several pharmacies looking for test kits but could not find any.

This is the case nationwide, according to news reports, which may cause some of you to go looking for them online.

Scammers are happy to fill the void, selling products without proof they work and setting up bogus COVID-19 testing sites to cash in on the crisis.

The United States Food and Drug Administration is sending warning letters to companies selling fraudulent products claiming to prevent, treat, mitigate, diagnose, or cure COVID-19. He said he was “also pursuing companies selling unapproved products by pursuing foreclosures, injunctions or criminal prosecution.”

The agency has already sent warning letters to many such companies, including more recently DermaCare Biosciences for its Easy Rapid Now COVID-19 nasal swab antigen test, Lepu Medical Technology for its test kit for neutralizing antibodies, a rapid SARS-CoV-2 antigen test kit, and a rapid saliva antigen test, and Vivera Pharmaceuticals for its COVxRDA saliva antigen test and its COVx-RDA nasal antigen test .

If you see the words “FDA registered”, “FDA certified”, or “FDA registration certificate” on a test kit website, they do not mean FDA approved, FDA cleared. or FDA cleared, because registration does not indicate approval, authorization, or authorization, and the FDA does not certify registration information or issue certificates. To date, it has approved 419 tests

To check if a test is FDA approved, visit fda.gov and enter the name of the test in the search bar.

Test sites appear in parking lots and other unexpected places, some legitimate, some not.

“Fake sites can look real, with legitimate-looking signs, tents and hazmat suits,” the Federal Trade Commission warned, “and they don’t follow remediation protocols, they can therefore spread the virus. They take people’s personal information, including social security numbers, credit card information, and other health information, all of which can be used for identity theft and to increase your credit card bill. credit.

The FTC recommends the following:

• Get a referral. Go to where a doctor refers you or to the location listed on the state website or your local health department.

• Are you unsure whether a site is legitimate? Check with your local police or sheriff’s office.

If you discover a fake site, report it to the State Department of Consumer Protection and

Contact Harlan and let them know your questions, issues and concerns as a consumer; send him an email to [email protected]

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