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Protecting Your Money: Bogus COVID-19 tests and testing sites

COVID-19 test
Posted at 5:22 PM, Jan 26, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-26 20:12:53-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — A mom says she took her son to this COVID-19 testing site on Kostoryz on January 7, where he gave a saliva sample.

"They had my son spit in a little tube. So I figured that was kind of different also," she told Action 10 News.

The mom says the woman who took her son's saliva sample said they were with Lab Corp and that the results would be available in three to four days. That was on January 7, more than two weeks ago.

"So I kind of felt something was off. I should have followed my instincts. They were not wearing any medical gear or masks," she said.

Katie Galan with the Better Business Bureau and Luis Wilmot, assistant director of the city-county health district, do not recommend the saliva sample.

"So when you do something like a saliva swab, it's not as reliable," Galan told us. "That test is not as sensitive, and it may not be able to detect the virus."

"I can't tell you that spitting in a collection tube is going to be enough to say if you're positive or negative," Wilmot added.

The mom says her son has since tested negative at a different site, but she worries about the information she gave at the Kostoryz testing site.

Action 10 News went to the Kostoryz site before noon on Wednesday, but it was closed. We also tried to check with Lab Corps to make sure tests had made their way to the company, but did not hear back as of late Wednesday afternoon.

Wilmot says the health department is not capable of checking the legitimacy of the many pop-up testing sites across the area.

"There's nobody governing them. We don't inspect them. We don't have time or even the people to inspect them," he said.

So how can you protect yourself?

Definitely ask questions first. Don't give out information other than your name and phone number, and remember, you can always file a complaint with the BBB or the Federal Trade Commission.