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Free at-home COVID test program to be suspended Friday

covid test
Ted S. Warren/AP
FILE - Boxes of BinaxNow home COVID-19 tests made by Abbott displayed for sale next to liquid hand soap at a CVS store in Lakewood, Wash., Monday, Nov. 15, 2021. People screening themselves at home for COVID-19 may need to use three rapid tests to accurately detect the virus, according to new U.S. recommendations released Thursday, Aug. 11, 2022, that call for a longer testing period. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

If you've been waiting to request another round of free at-home COVID-19 tests from the federal government, you may want to put that at the top of your to-do-list this week. The Biden administration is hitting pause on the program this Friday, saying Congress hasn't come through with enough funding.

"We need to secure additional supply now... now," President Joe Biden stressed. "We can't wait until we find ourselves in the midst of another surge to act."

That was back in late March, when the president was pleading with Congress to ok more than $22 billion in new COVID -related spending ahead of a potential fall surge. But now, the administration says it's putting the brakes on the free test program due to a lack of funding.

And while the free tests could come back should Congress re-up its support, a senior White House official told media outlets for now the remaining tests will be kept in reserve for a potential fall spike. But there's still a chance to order before the program is suspended Friday.

Order here.

Meanwhile, the pandemic news in Kentucky remains mixed. The governor's weekly updates have been notably brief in recent weeks, with reports of a potential plateauing of new cases while large swathes of the state — including Fayette County — remain in the red zone.

New bivalent COVID booster shots, meant to target both the original strain and new subvariants, could be approved by the FDA as early as this week.

Josh James fell in love with college radio at Western Kentucky University's student station, New Rock 92 (now Revolution 91.7). After working as a DJ and program director, he knew he wanted to come home to Lexington and try his hand in public radio.