Every home in Minnesota is eligible for free rapid COVID-19 tests. Here's how it works.

You can request eight rapid at-home COVID-19 tests each month, free of cost. You can do it online with a simple form, or you can also contact them by phone.

The Minnesota Department Of Health COVID-19 public hotline number is 1-833-431-2053. The line is open on Monday and Wednesday between 9 a.m. and 5 pm. Tuesdays and Thursdays go until 7 pm.

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The rapid tests are available while supplies last. Hopefully, you won't need more than eight tests a month, that would mean you have a pretty sick house.

If you haven't had a rapid test at home here's how they work:

  • Are rapid antigen at-home tests, not PCR
  • Can be taken anywhere
  • Give results within 15 minutes (no lab drop-off required)
  • Work whether or not you have COVID-⁠19 symptoms
  • Work whether or not you are up to date on your COVID-⁠19 vaccines
  • Are also referred to as self-tests or over-the-counter (OTC) tests

Make sure any remaining tests you may have aren't expired. Some test have been granted extensions on their expiration dates, so you may be able to use it for longer than it says on the box. You can find that information here from the FDA.

At-home rapid tests help detect the virus that causes COVID-19. The nasal swab test can give you results in as little as 15 minutes. If a positive result occurs, contact your health provider for the next steps.

COVID-19 levels are still low in St. Louis County as of November 9.

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Vaccinations for COVID-19 began being administered in the U.S. on Dec. 14, 2020. The quick rollout came a little more than a year after the virus was first identified in November 2019. The impressive speed with which vaccines were developed has also left a lot of people with a lot of questions. The questions range from the practical—how will I get vaccinated?—to the scientific—how do these vaccines even work?

Keep reading to discover answers to 25 common COVID-19 vaccine questions.

Gallery Credit: Stephanie Parker