Cost: $195 | Number of tests included: 3 | Time for results: 20 minutes | Positive Test Accuracy: 97.8% | Negative Test Accuracy: 97.8% |
Cue Health's COVID-19 Test is by far the most expensive test on this list. Each test cartridge is $65 and is sold in packs of three or ten. In order to use the cartridges, you'll need the $249 Cue Reader to process, analyze and transmit the results to your phone. You can buy a pack of 10 cartridges and the Cue Reader for $954.05, or a kit with a Cue Reader and 3 tests for $444.
Why so expensive? Unlike the iHealth and BinaxNOW tests, Cue Health's test isn't a rapid antigen test. The test uses "nucleic acid amplification", which is equivalent to a PCR test. PCR tests are the tests that you get at a doctor's office or a community testing center and can take several hours or days to get your results.
Cue's system gives you results in about 20 minutes.
An independent study by the Mayo Clinic found the Cue COVID test to be 97.8% accurate. Here's the FDA report, as well.
Cue offers two different subscription plans for those who don't want to spend a lot of money upfront for a Cue test system. For $39.99 per month, the Cue+ Essential plan gives you 10 tests per year, a $100 discount on the Cue Reader, and 24/7 access in the Cue Health app to primary care doctors.
For $74.99 a month, Cue+ Complete provides 20 tests per year, the same $100 discount on the Cue Reader, and -- most importantly -- the ability to take a supervised test at home. By taking a supervised test, your test results will be CDC-compliant and can be used to return to work, school, or travel.
In other words, instead of going to the doctor to get a PCR test and waiting a couple of days for the results before you can go back to work, you can take a test at home and have the results in 20 minutes.