So. We’re returning to “normal life” now. Or at least, we’re trudging ahead, seeking out the new normal. By now, most of the US has dropped mask mandates (excluding public transit and hospitals). Everybody who is not a conspiracy theorist has been vaccinated and boosted. We can get a small ration of free at-home test kits every month — and they are also becoming increasingly available in stores and online retailers.
Since vaccinated people can have Covid either without symptoms or with only minor seasonal-allergies-like symptoms, one of the most responsible things we can do before going out to meet up with friends and family is to take an at-home test. Doing this in the hours before departing can help catch cases and reduce outbreaks. This is a practice we need to normalize.
I’ve decided for myself that when I go out, I am not only going to take a Covid test, but I am going to proudly wear the result. It turns out that there is a wide variety of manufacturers of tests out there, each slightly different, but the ones I’ve encountered come in two flavors: a plastic cartridge (most everyone) or a test strip in a cardboard and plastic carrier (Binax). The Binax is a one-off design. For the others, I put together a parametric 3D model that lets you plug in the dimensions of the test cartridge.
Anyone with a 3D printer (or access to one through a friend or online printing service) can download and use these models from Thingiverse: Covid Test Result Necklace v4.
Even if you don’t literally wear your test when you go out, I’d still like to encourage you to test each time. Take a photo of your test result to show your friends when you meet up with them, to help normalize the practice and to encourage them to do the same.