White House 'strongly supported' Walmart, Kroger selling COVID-19 rapid tests at cost, Psaki says

At home COVID tests see price increases as shortages remain

The White House on Wednesday said it "strongly supported" the now expired agreement by Walmart and Kroger to sell over-the-counter COVID-19 testing kits "at cost" as cases continue to spike. 

In September, President Biden announced a three-month agreement by Walmart, Amazon and Kroger to sell "at cost" testing kits to help make tests more accessible. 

(Getty mages / Walmart)

WALMART AND KROGER RAISE PRICES FOR BINAXNOW RAPID COVID-19 TESTS

But despite the surge in cases due to the contagious omicron variant and testing shortages, only Walmart continued to offer "at cost" testing kits during the holiday season.

"We fulfilled our commitment to the Biden administration to sell at cost for 100 days and that pricing program has now phased out," a Kroger spokesperson told Fox News, adding that "pre-commitment" retail prices had been reinstated. 

When pressed by reporters on whether the White House attempted to prolong the agreement, Psaki said she would not discuss private talks with the providers, and noted other initiatives the administration has pushed to increase testing accessibility. 

WALMART AND KROGER RAISE PRICES FOR BINAXNOW RAPID COVID-19 TESTS

"We've made 20,000 testing sites available," she said. "We've opened a range of federal testing sites across the country. Our objective is to continue to expand access to free tests for the American people across the country."

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
WMT WALMART INC. 135.75 -1.40 -1.02%
KR THE KROGER CO. 44.38 -0.70 -1.55%
AMZN AMAZON.COM INC. 2,777.45 -22.27 -0.80%

The administration announced last month that it had purchased 500 million tests that will be available at some point in January. Though it remains unclear when exactly over the next month Americans can expect to get their hands on these tests. 

The White House is set to launch a website where Americans can request tests to be sent to their home for free. 

BinaxNOW

Abbott BinaxNOW COVID-19 antigen self test. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images / Getty Images)

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For those who are unable to get a free test, starting next week they will be able to submit a claim to their insurance company for the cost of the test, if they have health insurance. 

"We certainly believe our focus continues to be that we don't want any American to be in a position where tests are only available at an untenable price. That's why we are expanding free testing," Paski said.

FOX Business could not immediately reach Amazon for comment.