News, Top Stories October 15, 2020

Free At-Home COVID Tests for Wyoming

by Jackson Hole Radio News

Governor Mark Gordon has made free at-home COVID-19 tests available to the state’s residents. The saliva test is administered by Vault Health and allows residents to get results at home without needing to visit a healthcare provider. Wyoming has purchased 75,000 tests and could obtain additional tests if needed. The Free at-home COVID tests will supplement currently available testing options that include private healthcare providers, hospitals and some pharmacies.

The Governor is utilizing Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funds for the testing program. The White House has said that expanded testing will greatly improve Wyoming’s ability to track the epidemic, particularly when activities move back indoors. To take advantage of the free at-home COVID tests, residents should visit vaulthealth.com/covid and order a collection kit. The $150 testing fee is waived for all kits shipped to a Wyoming address and all shipping is prepaid.

Including the free at-home COVID test program, Governor Gordon has developed a plan to spend the entire $1.25 billion in federal dollars awarded to the state through the CARES Act. Those funds are currently required to be spent by December 30. A complete breakdown of how Wyoming is utilizing its CARES Act funding is available at https://www.wyomingsense.gov/cares-act.

The Governor has allocated $25 million to replenish Wyoming’s Unemployment Trust Fund and an additional $16.4 million in Workers Compensation Fund Premium Credits to help address the financial and economic strain on businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Wyoming’s Unemployment Trust Fund is required by statute to meet a specific balance. As a direct result of the pandemic, the state’s Trust Fund has experienced a significant deficiency. This additional $25 million in special funding will replenish the fund, help employers for their 2021 Unemployment Tax Rates, and ensure that the needs of Wyoming employers and job seekers are met in the future.