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COVID testing & Rapid testing near me in Greenfield, MA

Find and book COVID testing and rapid testing appointments in Greenfield and get same-day results. Convenient, top-rated providers with same-day testing.

COVID testing & Rapid testing near me in Greenfield, MA

Find and book COVID testing and rapid testing appointments in Greenfield and get same-day results. Convenient, top-rated providers with same-day testing.
<strong>COVID testing & Rapid testing near me</strong> in Greenfield, MA Illustration
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cvs-minuteclinic

CVS, MinuteClinic

CVS

137 Federal St, Greenfield, MA 01301137 Federal St
OpenTue 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Fri 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Sat 9:00 am - 5:30 pm
  • Sun 9:00 am - 4:30 pm
Call now
Bill Icon

Self-pay pricing

Clear self-pay prices

No more surprise bills. Solv is committed to making getting healthcare as easy as buying groceries at the store, including knowing the price of care upfront.

Antigen Test
Rapid
Results in same day
$139
walgreens

Walgreens

Walgreens

5 Pierce St, Greenfield, MA 013015 Pierce St
OpenTue 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Mon 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Tue 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Wed 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Thu 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Fri 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Sat 9:30 am - 1:00 pm
  • Sun10:30 am - 5:00 pm
Call now
Bill Icon

Self-pay pricing

Clear self-pay prices

No more surprise bills. Solv is committed to making getting healthcare as easy as buying groceries at the store, including knowing the price of care upfront.

PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
$129
dispatchhealth-springfield

DispatchHealth, Springfield

DispatchHealth

4.8(37k reviews)
Mobile Urgent Care
Servicing the West Springfield areaAt home urgent care
OpenTue 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
  • Fri 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
  • Sat 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
  • Sun 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
Book online
PCR Test
Rapid
Time to results unknown
Antigen Test
Rapid
Time to results unknown

Available times

greenfield-va-clinic

Greenfield VA Clinic

Greenfield VA Clinic

143 Munson St, Greenfield, MA 01301143 Munson St
OpenTue 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Fri 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • SatClosed
  • SunClosed
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
cvs-minuteclinic

CVS, MinuteClinic

CVS

165 University Dr, Amherst, MA 01002165 University Dr
OpenTue 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Fri 8:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Sat 9:00 am - 5:30 pm
  • Sun 9:00 am - 4:30 pm
Call now
Bill Icon

Self-pay pricing

Clear self-pay prices

No more surprise bills. Solv is committed to making getting healthcare as easy as buying groceries at the store, including knowing the price of care upfront.

Antigen Test
Rapid
Results in same day
$139
medexpress

MedExpress Urgent Care, Hadley

MedExpress Urgent Care

424 Russell St, Hadley, MA 01035424 Russell St
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
Antigen Test
Rapid
Results in 15 min
rite-aid-pharmacy

Rite Aid Pharmacy

Rite Aid Pharmacy

10 Main St, Winchester, NH 0347010 Main St
OpenTue 10:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Mon10:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Tue10:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Wed10:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Thu10:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Fri10:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Sat10:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Sun11:00 am - 5:00 pm
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-5 days
edward-p-boland-department-of-veterans-affairs-medical-center

Edward P. Boland Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center

Edward P. Boland Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center

421 N Main St, Northampton, MA 01053421 N Main St
OpenTue 12:00 am - 11:59 pm
  • Mon12:00 am - 11:59 pm
  • Tue12:00 am - 11:59 pm
  • Wed12:00 am - 11:59 pm
  • Thu12:00 am - 11:59 pm
  • Fri12:00 am - 11:59 pm
  • Sat12:00 am - 11:59 pm
  • Sun12:00 am - 11:59 pm
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
walgreens

Walgreens

Walgreens

476 Canal St, Brattleboro, VT 05301476 Canal St
OpenTue 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Mon 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Tue 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Wed 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Thu 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Fri 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Sat 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Sun11:00 am - 4:00 pm
Call now
Bill Icon

Self-pay pricing

Clear self-pay prices

No more surprise bills. Solv is committed to making getting healthcare as easy as buying groceries at the store, including knowing the price of care upfront.

PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
$129
cvs-minuteclinic

CVS, MinuteClinic

CVS

366 King St, Northampton, MA 01060366 King St
OpenTue 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Fri 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Sat 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Sun 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
Call now
Bill Icon

Self-pay pricing

Clear self-pay prices

No more surprise bills. Solv is committed to making getting healthcare as easy as buying groceries at the store, including knowing the price of care upfront.

PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
Antigen Test
Rapid
Results in same day
$139
cooley-dickinson-hospital

Cooley Dickinson Hospital

Cooley Dickinson Hospital

30 Locust St, Northampton, MA 0106030 Locust St
OpenTue 8:00 am - 5:30 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 5:30 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 5:30 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 5:30 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 5:30 pm
  • Fri 8:00 am - 5:30 pm
  • Sat 8:00 am - 5:30 pm
  • Sun 8:00 am - 5:30 pm
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
clearchoicemd-brattleboro

ClearChoiceMD, Brattleboro

ClearChoiceMD

3.33(9 reviews)
1154 Putney Rd, Brattleboro, VT 053011154 Putney Rd
OpenTue 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Fri 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Sat 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Sun 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
Call now

Recent patient review

Clear Choice is a great place!! People there CARE and are so respectful. Short wait times. MDs and PAs are extremely good!! HIGHLY RECOMMEND!!! Thanks to them all!!
Bill Icon

Self-pay pricing

Clear self-pay prices

No more surprise bills. Solv is committed to making getting healthcare as easy as buying groceries at the store, including knowing the price of care upfront.

PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
$139
Antigen Test
Rapid
Results in < 1 hour
$214
cvs-pharmacy

CVS Pharmacy

CVS Pharmacy

70 W State St, Granby, MA 0103370 W State St
OpenTue 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Mon 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Tue 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Wed 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Thu 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Fri 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Sat 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
  • Sun10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
walgreens

Walgreens

Walgreens

583 James St, Chicopee, MA 01020583 James St
OpenTue 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Mon 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Tue 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Wed 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Thu 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Fri 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
  • Sat 9:30 am - 1:00 pm
  • Sun10:30 am - 5:00 pm
Call now
Bill Icon

Self-pay pricing

Clear self-pay prices

No more surprise bills. Solv is committed to making getting healthcare as easy as buying groceries at the store, including knowing the price of care upfront.

PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
$129
holyoke-medical-center

Holyoke Medical Center

Holyoke Medical Center

575 Beech St, Holyoke, MA 01040575 Beech St
OpenTue 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • Mon 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • Tue 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • Wed 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • Thu 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • Fri 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • SatClosed
  • SunClosed
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
medexpress

MedExpress Urgent Care, Chicopee

MedExpress Urgent Care

2.0(2 reviews)
1505 Memorial Dr, Chicopee, MA 010221505 Memorial Dr
OpenTue 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Fri 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Sat 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Sun 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
Antigen Test
Rapid
Results in 15 min
convenientmd-keene

ConvenientMD, Keene

ConvenientMD

3.08(6 reviews)
351 Winchester St, Keene, NH 03431351 Winchester St
OpenTue 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Fri 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Sat 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Sun 8:00 am - 8:00 pm
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
Antigen Test
Rapid
Results in 15 min
quest-diagnostics

Quest Diagnostics

Quest Diagnostics

391 West St, Keene, NH 03431391 West St
OpenTue 7:00 am - 12:00 pm
  • Mon 7:00 am - 12:00 pm
  • Tue 7:00 am - 12:00 pm
  • Wed 7:00 am - 12:00 pm
  • Thu 7:00 am - 12:00 pm
  • Fri 7:00 am - 12:00 pm
  • SatClosed
  • SunClosed
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
cvs-pharmacy

CVS Pharmacy

CVS Pharmacy

250 Whiting Farms Rd, Holyoke, MA 01040250 Whiting Farms Rd
OpenTue 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Fri 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Sat 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
  • Sun10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
keene-va-clinic

Keene VA Clinic

Keene VA Clinic

640 Marlboro St, Keene, NH 03431640 Marlboro St
OpenTue 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 6:30 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • FriUnknown
  • SatUnknown
  • SunUnknown
Call now
cvs-pharmacy

CVS Pharmacy

CVS Pharmacy

104 West St, Ware, MA 01082104 West St
OpenTue 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Mon 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Tue 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Wed 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Thu 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Fri 8:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Sat 9:00 am - 6:00 pm
  • Sun10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Call now
PCR Test
Results in 1-3 days
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VIDEO: Dr. Isaac Thomsen, pediatric infectious disease specialist, discusses COVID-19 and Delta variant and what in means for kids.Watch now!

Latest COVID Testing Updates

Jun 15, 2022
COVID vaccines for kids under 5 move closer to FDA authorization after committee backs shots. The FDA’s committee of independent vaccine experts voted unanimously to recommend Moderna and Pfizer’s shots for use in infants through toddlers. The FDA will likely accept the recommendation and authorize the shots this week.(CNBC)
Jun 15, 2022
BA.4 and BA.5 — "sister variants" of the original omicron strain — are gaining prevalence in the U.S. and now account for about 1 in 5 confirmed COVID-19 cases nationwide, CDC data shows. (Becker's)

COVID Testing FAQs

  • How much does COVID testing cost in Greenfield?

    In many cases, COVID testing can be free. Many state and local health departments continue to offer free testing to community residents as part of their response to the pandemic. In other cases, commercially insured patients, or those on Medicare or Medicaid, may receive testing at no out of pocket cost, or with a nominal office visit copay. For cash paying patients, or those that need rapid COVID testing which will deliver results in under an hour, COVID tests can range from $50 to $150 each. It is best to call your healthcare provider prior to getting tested to better understand the cost of the specific test you require.

  • Where can I get free COVID testing in Greenfield?

    COVID testing is available for free under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which includes testing for those without health insurance. Check with your Greenfield-area health department as they are generally a good source for free COVID tests, or can at least point you in the right direction. Additionally, you can ask your primary care provider to recommend a free COVID test site.

  • Where can I get COVID testing in Greenfield?

    COVID testing is available at many outlets near Greenfield including urgent care centers, retail clinics, primary care offices, health departments, and more. Different venues will have different types of tests available, many at different price points. Some testing sites are allowing walk-in patients, however, many are still requiring some degree of advance booking to control patient volume.

  • Where can I get a rapid COVID test in Greenfield?

    Rapid testing—both PCR (molecular) and antigen tests—is offered through many Greenfield-area urgent care centers and physician offices, usually at an additional cost ranging from $50 up to $150 per test. Usually this will allow you to get results back in under an hour, and require advanced booking through the provider. However, if you can wait 24 hours for your results, many labs are turning around send-out lab tests in that time frame, which could save you some money.

  • How to make an appointment for COVID testing in Greenfield?

    Same-day and next day appointments for COVID testing in Greenfield are bookable directly through Solv. Simply browse the list of healthcare providers conducting COVID tests above, find one with a “Book Online” button, and book a time that aligns with your schedule stating “COVID-19 Test” as your reason for visit.

  • Can I get tested for antibodies if I am sick with COVID-19 Greenfield?

    An antibody test for COVID-19 might inform you if you previously had a coronavirus infection. Because it can take between 1–3 weeks after an infection for your body to develop these antibodies, an antibody test during an active infection would not be successful. To see if you are currently infected, you need a viral test.

  • Do I need a COVID test if I have been vaccinated?

    Even if you have been fully vaccinated, if you have been exposed to someone who has COVID-19, experts believe that you should be tested yourself, particularly if you are experiencing cold and flu symptoms commonly aligned with the coronavirus.

  • How long does COVID testing take?

    Getting a COVID test is quick. Most tests are done with a nasal swab, which takes less than a minute to swab both nostrils. Depending on where you get your COVID test, this means you could be in and out of the testing site in as little as 10-15 minutes. During busy times—particularly around holidays—testing sites may be busier than usual and wait times may be longer.

  • How long does it take to get COVID test results in Greenfield?

    Most labs are returning send-out molecular (PCR) COVID test results within 24-48 hours of the test. Some sites take longer, so call and ask if the reason for the test is proof for travel. Rapid COVID tests are processed on-site and are able to deliver results in under an hour, sometimes in as little as 15 min.

  • Do COVID tests detect the Delta variant and Omicron variant?

    Regular COVID tests are able to detect both the Delta variant and Omicron variant in that they can determine whether or not you have the coronavirus. However, they can't tell which variation is involved. That would necessitate genomic sequencing, which is a different process from regular virus testing that not all labs can undertake. Sequencing is uncommon and can cost up to $100 per test. Since the treatment is the same for any variant, it is not clinically useful to an individual patient to know whether the infection was caused by a variant or not.

Recent COVID Testing Reviews (20)

I scheduled an appointment for 8am and was not seen until after 9am, the nurse who took my Covid test was great, very friendly, quick and informative, the girl at the front desk was not very informative or friendly. Very clean facility!

- Verified patient on 2/23

After filling out paper work regarding sinus infections...Dr called and ask me you calling about covid testing. I said no. He said well how can i help you? It had me a bit concern he didnt know why i was calling...

- Verified patient on 1/3

The Chelmsford staff has been very friendly, efficient & accommodating. We have used the COVID testing opportunity several times & appreciate all they have done to make this experience as simple as possible. Bravo to all!

- Verified patient on 1/4

Whole experience felt safe especially with covid going on, only comment is that your receptionist at 3pm 4/23/*** was not very friendly at all, in fact she acted rudely on the phone however everyone else was wonderful. I went in a couple days ago for a strep test and covid test which both came out ok. The person who did the test and the Dr I spoke with on the phone before the test were both very pleasant.

- Verified patient on 4/23

Great place and staff. Definitely recommend this place if you are traveling and need to get your COVID test done. Get your appointment in few days ahead and the rest is simple. Result is made available in few hours.

- Verified patient on 2/25

The clinic was immaculate and the staff (from the front desk staff to the medical assistant that administered my daughter’s Covid test) was so friendly and professional. An excellent experience, highly recommend this location. A++!

- Verified patient on 4/12

I got the COVID testing window incorrect and the nurse still came out to test me and just explained my results would be delayed as the lab pickup had already occurred. Very grateful I was still able to be tested as I need results for my second job.

- Verified patient on 12/7

Staff was great but went in for covid test and had to wait for an exam which I didnf know ahead of time and was late for work...why not just do tests like cvs etc

- Verified patient on 7/27

I was a walk-in for a Covid test on a Saturday. I didn’t see on the website that walk ins are only taken after 1:00pm. I arrived around 12:30 pm. There was no one there so I don't understand why they couldn’t take me. By 1:00 pm the waiting room began to fill up which could have been avoided. The wait wasn’t that long and the results were quick. Overall a great experience. The staff was very friendly, helpful and professional.

- Verified patient on 8/22

The Covid test options and process of searching for a test facility can be daunting and confusing as you probably hear from many people. I’m SO glad I chose Physician One since the girl who explained the online booking & the testing steps the other day was patient & helpful; plus Kimberly Carr with whom I had my video visit this morning was outstanding-kind, professional, knowledgeable and clear about the various test options and the details of my upcoming test. She excels at customer service and I hope this feedback reaches her.

- Verified patient on 12/4

I came in for a rapid COVID test so I could see my dad in hospice. When I mentioned the reason I was there, the staff was so kind and worked to get me in and out quickly. When I needed my results sent a second time, they were so helpful and sent them quickly. Thanks for making a difficult time a bit easier. I cannot tell you how much I appreciated your kindness.

- Verified patient on 3/30

Been there 3 times for COVID tests; short to no wait time, quick efficient service; registration is cumbersome - initiating process on website seems to result in a telemedicine appointment which requires phone followup to correct to just a drive-thru test; also received a cancellation notice for my test appointment only to call and find out it was not cancelled; whenever I've spoken to a human everything was fine; improved user interface and better coordination between website and appointment bookings would help

- Verified patient on 11/19

6 of us had COVID tests. 5 got our results. We where told you would be open on Thanksgiving, that’s the main reason we went there. You were not open and we have no one to contact for help. For 1, this was a total waste of time and money. We were also given one price when we made our appointments, but on test day, we were told a $30 higher price per person.

- Verified patient on 11/26

Wanted a quick covid test. Very easy to call, schedule,and get in to get the test done. Only complaint is I was not told when the results will be in. I guess I'll callback to find out.

- Verified patient on 3/8

3 of us came to have a Covid test because we were exposed to a person who tested positive. Judy and Sam were wonderful and professional in their dealings with us. I would highly recommend this urgent care and the great staff who cared for us.

- Verified patient on 12/19

It was the best experience. I f you have to have a Covid test, this is the place to go.From the moment we walked in and we were greeted by Marge, had the test with Judi and the checkup with Sam, it was easy and believe it or not warm Thank you.

- Verified patient on 12/21

Needed a quick covid test. My phone call was answered by a real human. The procedure to get the test taken was explained thoroughly. Questions were answered and the test was administered quickly. All the staff, nurses and doctor were all professional, courteous and caring. I do highly recommend this service.

- Verified patient on 4/2

I needed to get a COVID test I booked a telemedicine appt. it wasn’t clear to me that that the telemedicine appt was an intake appt. I went to the location. I will have to go back for the actual test. Not a problem as I live close but maybe the process could be clarified. Hang in there folks!! You’re doing a great job

- Verified patient on 8/3

Waited over an hour from my appointment time which was unfortunate but understandable. The physician who I saw was extremely disappointing and did not respect my patient autonomy to receive the care that I wanted. Being someone who is in the medical field, i would never say “alright, i’m done hitting my head against the wall,” to a patient who is requesting something as simple as a COVID test. The rest of the staff inside the actual office were very friendly and caring.

- Verified patient on 1/9

Had a video consultation with Dr. Rick. He was friendly and personable. He recommended that I get covid tested and called the office ahead of my arrival 30 minutes later. The staff at the office was speedy and courteous. I was done in less than 5 minutes. Now I wait for the results...

- Verified patient on 1/13

Greenfield COVID Testing & Rapid Testing

Types of COVID Tests

There are two types of coronavirus tests (COVID-19 tests) available, those that can test for a current infection (viral test) and those that can test for a past infection (antibody test).

Viral COVID testing can be done in a few different ways, the most common being nose swabs, but saliva tests are becoming more popular. Some tests are processed out on-site and can provide results in as little as 30 minutes. These are called rapid COVID tests. The majority of tests, on the other hand, are collected at the clinic on-site and then submitted to off-site labs for processing. Results can take up to 2-3 days to arrive. 

Antibody testing looks for a past infection and may not reveal if you have an active COVID-19 infection because antibodies can take up to three weeks to form in your body. The presence of COVID antibodies may help to prevent you from becoming infected with the same virus again; but, because the clinical understanding of COVID-19 is still developing, it's unclear how long that protection will continue.

Who should get tested for current infection

The CDC currently defines four instances where COVID testing is recommended:

  1. If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 including fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea.
  2. If you have been in close contact with someone with confirmed COVID-19. Close contact is defined as within 6 feet for a total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period. If you have been vaccinated, or tested positive in the past 3 months and not experiencing symptoms, you do not need to be tested.
  3. If you are unvaccinated and participated in high-risk activities where distancing is not an option. This could include travel, large social or mass gatherings, crowded indoor settings, etc.
  4. If you have been referred to get a COVID test by your healthcare provider or local health department. 

How is testing done for COVID-19?

Most COVID tests are collected by a nasal swab. A member of the medical team puts a swab inside your nose for a few seconds on each side to collect the sample. After that, the samples are packaged according to CDC guidelines and tested on-site or transported to a facility for testing. The lab will test samples for the presence of the coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2), which causes COVID infection and either your care provider or the lab will notify you with the results as soon as they are available.

PCR vs Antigen Testing

Viral COVID tests are available as molecular and antigen tests. The molecular test, also known as a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test, usually delivers results within a few days since most of these tests are sent to offsite labs for analysis. The average turnaround time for PCR test results is 48 hours, but in some instances may be significantly longer due to backlogs related to insufficient lab volume and capacity. Antigen tests are also known as rapid tests and have an average turnaround time of between 15 to 30 minutes.

Both PCR and rapid COVID tests can be used to test people exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, those who were close contacts to COVID-19, and those without COVID-19 symptoms who live or work in a high-risk setting (such as a nursing facility); or those individuals who are identified as part of outbreak detection and response. The rapid COVID test is also recommended for the screening of residents or healthcare workers at skilled nursing facilities along with a PCR confirmation, and for repeat screening for the early detection and prevention of outbreaks in congregate settings (such as schools, workplaces, and prisons).

COVID testing is available for free under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which includes testing for those without health insurance. To reduce the risk of facing extra costs related to COVID testing, ask your primary care doctor to recommend a free COVID test site, and confirm there are no charges or fees for the test that are not covered by your insurance plan. Additionally, avoid getting a COVID test at a hospital or free-standing emergency room, as these facilities may charge fees for COVID testing and related services.

Rob Rohatsch
Medically reviewed by Dr. Rob Rohatsch, MD

Updated on Sep 25, 22

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