The information provided here is intended to help you understand the COVID-19 PCR test and COVID-19 antibody serology test. If you have further questions or would like to discuss any of the information, please talk to your healthcare provider. For the most up-to-date information on COVID-19 please visit the CDC Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) webpage: https://www.cdc.gov/nCoV
What is Coronavirus?
COVID-19 is a new respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. The virus is thought to spread mainly between people who are in close contact with one another through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
How long will it take to get my results?
It takes on average between 1-3 days to obtain results. This may change depending on the supply, demand or capacity of the lab to run the tests. The tests performed are under a FDA “Emergency Use Authorization” (EUA). Although rare, if you feel you have any adverse effects from the performance of this test or problems with the results, report them to MedWatch by submitting the online FDA Form 3500 or by calling 1-800-FDA-1088.
How will this affect me?
Currently there is no specific antiviral treatment or vaccine available. It is important to contact your healthcare provider to determine your best course of care. Call ahead to avoid exposing others. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911. Regardless of results, continue to practice social distancing (staying 6 feet away from other persons) and avoid large gatherings. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Stay home when you are sick . Cover your cough or sneeze with your elbow or clean tissue. Disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces including your electronic devices.
Why is testing important?
A positive or negative result may not change your immediate treatment but is an important factor in determining your best course of care. Diagnostic testing is also an essential component for health care authorities to get a better sense of how this disease is spreading. Appropriately validated tests, when used broadly, may help guide containment strategies, prioritize actions and help researchers determine what is needed or effective. These tests can also be useful to examine patterns, to determine which communities may have had more cases, suggesting more ‘herd immunity’ which reflects the degree of resistance to infection in a population.
Can I return to work?
Please speak with your employer for your specific return to work guidelines. Returning to work is dependent on both test results, availability of tests, and symptoms. You may refer to the CDC guidelines for more information at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/disposition-in-home-patients.html