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Hays County woman wants answers after company blames bad messaging for misleading information about COVID-19 testing kits

The MDBox CEO said it was not his intention to mislead.

HAYS COUNTY, Texas — UPDATE: A spokesperson for MDBox told KVUE that the company issued a refund to Linda Krolczyk on April 1. 

Krolczyk told KVUE she waited a few days and when she didn't see it show up in her bank account, that's when she reached out to KVUE. She said the $49.95 didn't actually show up in her bank account until sometime between April 8 and April 9.

MDBox also issued Krolczyk an apology letter the day after KVUE'S story aired.

"Dear Linda, 

We want to apologize for the information you received from the COVID Taskforce website and press conference. When we learned last night about your situation we immediately reviewed your purchase and saw that we had already refunded your MDBox telemedicine visit on April 1st. In addition to the refund, we’d like to give you a free MDBox telemedicine visit, if you are ever in need of health care attention. We also offer free in-home symptom monitoring at https://covid19.mdbox.com/ which sends you a daily text message to check temperature and symptoms. If symptoms are severe or progressing we’ll provide guidance on next steps, including going to the ER, calling your doctor or using one of our telemedicine doctors.

We immediately reached out to the COVID Taskforce and had their website removed from the internet to avoid your situation occurring with anyone else seeking help during these challenging times.

May you and your family stay safe and healthy.

Sincerely,

Shane and Hank"

ORIGINAL: Linda Krolczyk's brother and nephew visit her almost every day at her home. 

"So he's exposed every day. His son is exposed every day," Krolczyk said.

Because they're family, social distancing doesn't exist.

"We hug and we forget, and then right after it's like, 'Oh, OK,'" she said.

She's worried about catching the coronavirus and worried for her family too.

That's when she heard about MDBox's at-home COVID-19 kits, following the company's public announcement last week.

"It was comforting to know we'd be about to do that," Krolczyk said.

She signed up immediately.

"At one point it asked me to pay $49.95 in order to proceed," she said.

But instead of getting the testing kit, she got emails explaining why she wasn't getting what she paid for.

A representative for Reliant Immune Diagnostics, the company that owns MDBox, wrote Krolczyk, saying, "At this time, they have not informed us of a citizen-use plan of distribution for COVID-19 test kits."

So, what happened?

KVUE's Jenni Lee asked the CEO of Reliant Immune Diagnostics, Dr. Henry Legere. He said the company's announcement of selling 50,000 COVID-19 kits at H-E-B was premature.

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"[It] created some communication errors and really it was poor timing and poor logistical execution," Dr. Legere said.

And what about the COVID-19 kits, calling them at-home testing programs in their own press release? 

Dr. Legere said they're actually an at-home monitoring service -- basically a telemedicine visit.

"It was not the intention to be misleading but I think what it is, we're so close to the fire that we know exactly what we mean when we say it," he said.'

But Krolczyk isn't buying it.

"Didn't it say on their website in-home test kits? It said it on their website for this amount of money," she said.

She's out $50.

What's worse she said, is she got her hopes up at a time when no one can afford it.

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