WHERE CAN I GET TESTED FOR COVID-19?
Call your doctor if you have symptoms and want to be tested for COVID-19.
Testing may be available at your doctor’s office, urgent care center, pharmacy, or other healthcare clinic. Some testing sites in Virginia are offering community testing events, such as drive-thru testing. Call ahead before going for medical care so they can help you decide if you need to be tested for COVID-19.
Not everyone needs to be tested Most people who have COVID-19 are able to recover at home without medical care.
Get medical attention right away if you have any health emergency.
How much will testing cost?
Many health insurance plans cover the cost of testing and related health care costs. For specific information about your health insurance coverage, call your insurance company. You can usually find their phone number on your insurance card. Most insurance covers testing cost without a co-pay.
Uninsured or under-insured people in Virginia with COVID-19 symptoms can get tested through the state public health lab for free. Please contact a free clinic, federally qualified health center, or emergency department to have the specimen collected. Your local health department can help you get connected with one of these places for testing. You may also visit www.coverVA.org to see if you qualify for Medicaid.
TYPES OF TESTING
Viral Test: This type of test tells you if you have a current infection by looking for parts of the virus itself. A healthcare professional will use saliva (spit) or a swab to take samples from the back of the nose, mouth, or lower respiratory tract for the test.
Antibody Test: This test will tell you if you had a previous infection by measuring the amount of antibodies in the blood that are made when the body is responding to a specific infection, like COVID-19. Antibodies are made by the immune system when a germ enters a person’s body. Our immune systems help us fight off germs and diseases. The test uses a blood sample to look for these antibodies. It takes time (from 1-3 weeks) for the body to make antibodies in response to an infection. We do not know how long the antibodies stay in the body after the infection is over. Antibody tests have limited ability to diagnose COVID-19 and should not be used alone to diagnose COVID-19.
HOW TO GET TESTED
Testing may be available at your doctor’s office, urgent care center, pharmacy, or other healthcare clinic. Some testing sites in Virginia are offering community testing events, such as drive-thru testing, Each site has different policies and procedures for testing and billing; please reach out to the individual site for information about testing availability.
After testing, stay home and avoid contact with others as you wait for your test results.
After testing, how will I get my results?
You will get your test results from the healthcare facility that collected your specimens. Ask them at the time of testing what's the best way to get your results. Most clinics and health care professionals will provide results by telephone and can give you a time frame in which to expect them. They can also tell you what to do while you wait for them to come in as well as tell you what to do if your test comes back positive or negative.