By JIM MUSTIAN, JEFFREY COLLINS and CANDICE CHOI
NEW YORK (AP) — President Joe Biden promised to distribute hundreds of millions of free COVID-19 tests and to open more testing sites, but the stepped-up efforts will not come in time for the holidays. Americans have been searching drugstores for scarce home tests or waiting hours at testing facilities across the country. Fueling the surging demand for tests is a mix of factors, including families seeking to keep holiday gatherings safe and people needing to prove they are virus-free for travel, work or school. Adding to the pressure is the extra-contagious omicron variant. It has a multiplying effect on the number of people seeking tests after being exposed to an infected person.