Amidst the fear gripping the American public, some companies seek to capitalize. Some offer fake remedies. Others, like Yikon Genomics Inc. offer fraudulent at home coronavirus tests. In response, officials in Los Angeles sued the company and achieved immediate compliance.
Last month, Yikon Genomics Inc. began selling their at home coronavirus tests to the public. They advertised them through social media, pricing each at $39.
Furthermore, they claimed their tests attained approval from the Food and Drug Administration, despite no such tests existing. To date, the FDA has not approved any at home coronavirus tests for public purchase.
Testing takes place at specific sites. Only healthcare professionals, suited in protective gear, administer the tests, and only to those deemed necessary to test. For example, those with symptoms related to covid-19, such as fever, persistent cough, and shortness of breath, who recently came into contact with a confirmed case should seek testing.
However, the government directs most to self-isolate and avoid any social interaction to avoid spread.
Yikon, and similar companies, earn profits by capitalizing on misinformation. While Mike Feuer, the city attorney of Los Angeles, successfully stopped Yikon, still others continue to operate. “This is not an isolated incident,” Feuer said in reference to Yikon’s fraudulent actions.
Simultaneously, his office sent a cease and desist letter to another company offering fake at home testing kits. NPR reported on the scheme perpetrated by Wellness Matrix Group in which they offered tests during the state’s testing shortage.
In addition to local efforts, the Trump administration pledged to aggressively prosecute any companies or individuals committing fraud in relation to the outbreak.
As scams proliferate, officials warn the public against any miracle cures or unsanctioned testing. All treatment takes place with medical professionals and no drugs nor tests have received approval from the FDA.