Burbank Teachers and Staff Given Wrong Covid-19 Take-Home Tests

(Photo By Ross Benson)

Burbank Unified School District Superintendent Matt Hill sent an email to all teachers and staff on Thursday to let them know that the take-home Covid-19 tests they were given have not been approved for home use.

He explained in an email obtained by myBurbank that the Indicaid tests that were purchased by the district were done so after getting approval from the Los Angeles County Office of Education (LACOE).

Employees had raised concerns about the tests to the district.

While the tests have been approved “for use under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) only for the duration of the COVID-19 declaration justifying the emergency use of in vitro diagnostics (IVD), unless it is terminated or revoked by the FDA (after which the test may no longer be used).”

According to one of the websites that sell the test it also states “The IndicAid COVID-19 rapid antigen test kit is available for at-home use for anyone with medical supervision, and it is authorized for use by medical professionals. It appears the test is intended for the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) for passengers to take with a medical professional.” It also stated on their website (sunlinesupply.com) that “CLIA number is required from all Purchasers of the tests.”

It is not known where the district purchased the tests from or if the LACOE was told by the Burbank district if the tests were meant to be given by medical professionals as prescribed or just to be given to employees as take-home tests before authorizing their purchase. It was also not said if any research was done on the tests before purchasing them.

In Hill’s email to teachers and staff, he gave the following response from the LACOE, “The Indicaid tests obtained by the district and provided to staff have received FDA emergency use authorization for certified testing sites operating under a CLIA-waiver and test kit materials are safe for use. However, these kits should not have been sold to the district, because bulk orders of these kits require a CLIA waiver and ordering physician for purchase. We apologize for the confusion caused to staff. LACOE/DPH is following up with the company to understand where the confusion occurred.“

He said employees would be issued a new iHealth test this Friday. All employees will be required to take the test on Sunday and report their results by next Monday, except for employees who have had Covid-19 in the past 90 days who do not have to test.