Stephanie Chen has been working in the office in Orange County, Calif., each day, taking her 5-year-old son to school, attending church and going about her routine for nine days, all while wondering if she is positive for Covid-19.

When Ms. Chen learned that her cousin’s entire family tested positive for the virus after a Christmas gathering she attended with them in Orange County, pharmacies were sold out of rapid tests. Lines exceeded two hours at a local testing site. A Rite Aid website said no appointments were available within 50 miles of her home for at least two weeks.

Ms. Chen, 38, who isn’t symptomatic, tried to order a home-delivered PCR test through a Los Angeles County program, but so far hasn’t even received confirmation it is on its way. “I’m just frustrated because they’re telling us, ‘Go test, go test,’ but how do you do that if the resources aren’t available?” Ms. Chen said.


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