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MDH now offers portal for self-reporting positive at-home test results

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Posted at 3:50 PM, Jan 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-12 18:11:07-05

BALTIMORE (WMAR) — After distributing hundreds of thousands of at-home rapid COVID tests, the state has launched a new portal to track positive results from the self-administered tests.

Up until now, the Maryland Department of Health was not tracking the results. Instead people were encouraged to report them to the test manufacturer.

MDH is still figuring out how to present this data to the public. It’s not currently included in the daily case reporting.

However, Dr. Clifford Mitchell said that doesn’t skew the big picture when it comes to trends and making decisions.

“What’s the overall direction of the pandemic here in Maryland and across the country? I think that what we look at is a combination of all the data that we have coming in, so part is that is a function of positivity rate, part of that is a function of looking at hospitalizations and deaths,” said Mitchell.

So far, the state has distributed half of the one million at home tests Gov. Larry Hogan announced in November. Hogan expects to receive another half million rapid tests for the state in the coming days.

They’re highly sought after, providing a quick result that Mitchell said is accurate and reliable if administered correctly.

“One of the biggest factors in terms of the reliability and confidence that you have in an a- home test, a self-administered test, is how well you collect the specimen, how well you follow the directions in the kit,” said Mitchell.

He said they be used even if you’re experiencing very mild symptoms.

“With the omicron variant, people are describing even minor cold symptoms and then testing positive,” said Mitchell.

Baltimore County is hosting at-home test giveaways all week, as neighboring jurisdictions including Anne Arundel and Howard counties say they are all out of kits.