While there are some people who believe that the we’re now close to the end of the COVID-19 pandemic, some scientists assert the virus is here to stay, and it could just take on a similar ebb and flow to the flu.
Regardless of which school of thought you adopt, one thing that cannot be refuted is that COVID-19 testing remains crucial for preventing and mitigating the spread of the disease that has already upended the lives of billions of people the world over.
Learn more about COVID-19 testing through the answers to a few of the most frequently asked questions about it, as listed below:
Q: When Do I Need A COVID-19 Test?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that people get tested for COVID-19 if any of the following circumstances applies to them:
- Have symptoms of the virus (e.g., fever, chills, sore throat, cough, difficulty breathing, etc.)
- Have had known or suspected close contact with someone who’s been diagnosed with COVID-19- Even if the person is fully vaccinated, they should be tested 5 to 7 days after their exposure.
- Not fully vaccinated and had known or suspected exposure to someone who’s confirmed to have COVID-19- If the test is negative, they should test again 5 to 7 days later or immediately if symptoms develop.
- Starting an academic year or returning to work
- Need to travel
- Have been required to do so by a public health official or healthcare professional
Q: What Type of Covid Test Should I Have?
There are two types of COVID-19 viral tests available that are designed to check for current infection:
- PCR test- This involves taking a sample which can either be a nasal swab or saliva. It is reliable for people with and without symptoms as it is highly sensitive to detecting even very small amounts of the virus. Test results are usually available within 1 to 3 days, and no follow-up test is usually required.
- Rapid test (Antigen test)– Rapid tests usually involve also taking a nasal swab sample. They provide quick results (within 15 to 30 minutes) and are useful screening tests, but they are generally less sensitive compared to PCR tests and may be less reliable for people without symptoms. Follow-up tests may therefore be necessary.
Q: What If I Don’t Have Symptoms, Do I Still Need to Get Tested?
COVID-19 symptoms may take 2 to 14 days to appear after a person’s exposure to the virus. If you suspect you may have been exposed to the virus, you should take the correct precautionary measures right away.
One recent study estimated that 35 percent of all COVID-19 infections are asymptomatic, meaning the virus could be potentially transmitted to others unknowingly. Regular antigen testing is a quick and effective way to help identify asymptomatic cases of COVID-19.
Q: Where Should I Go for a Covid-19 Test?
You can get a COVID-19 test from an urgent care facility near you. However, you have to call the provider beforehand, so they can tell you how to safely go about the process—without the potential risk of disease transmission.
COVID-19 Testing in King, NC
At Cardinal Urgent Care, we are your one-step destination for your healthcare needs. In addition to providing top-notch urgent care, we offer a vast array of ancillary services—including COVID-19 testing, occupational health services, and diagnostic services—as part of our goal of delivering comprehensive health care for the men, women, and children in our community.
If you would like to find out more about COVID-19 testing or our other healthcare services, call us today at (336) 983-9111. Got an urgent medical situation? Simply walk in! We offer convenient extended opening hours, so you can get the care you need, when you need it.