At-Home Testing | CDC

Illustration of a house

You and your healthcare provider could look at possibly an at-household collection package or an at-household examination if you have indicators and signs of COVID-19 and if you just can’t get tested by a healthcare provider.

At-household collection kits and assessments are available possibly by prescription or around the counter in a pharmacy or retail retail outlet without a prescription. At the moment available at-household assessments look for recent an infection.

Accumulating Specimens

Clean your fingers, then adhere to the directions bundled with the specimen collection or examination package for amassing your individual nasal or saliva specimen.

  • For the greatest effects, acquire and take care of the specimens according to the manufacturer’s  instructions. If you really do not acquire the specimens as directed, your examination effects may perhaps be incorrect.

Some assessments involve a nasal specimen that can be collected making use of an anterior nasal swab or a nasal mid-turbinate swab. Other assessments involve a saliva specimen.

Illustration of a collection kit

As soon as collected, deliver the specimen to a tests facility or use the specimen, as explained in the manufacturer’s directions, to complete the at-household examination.

Accomplishing the Take a look at

Adhere to the manufacturer’s directions just and in the purchase specified. The manufacturer may perhaps also supply other assets, these as swift reference guides or instructional video clips, to assist you perform the examination effectively.


  • Shop all examination elements according to the manufacturer’s directions right until all set for use.
  • Really do not use expired assessments or examination elements that are weakened or discolored.
  • Disinfect the countertop, desk, or other area in which you will do the examination.
  • Really do not open examination devices or other examination elements right until the tests system is about to manifest.
  • Read through and record examination effects only inside the total of time specified in the manufacturer’s directions. A end result read in advance of or just after the specified timeframe may perhaps not be accurate.
  • Really do not reuse examination devices or other elements.

Just after you have the effects, discard the specimen collection swab and examination package in the trash, disinfect all surfaces that the specimen may perhaps have touched, and wash your fingers.

Illustration of a person using a cell phone to report results

Reporting Success

Connect your effects to your healthcare provider, who is accountable for reporting your examination effects to the point out health and fitness office. If the at-household examination has an app that enables you to report your effects to the point out health and fitness office, inform your healthcare provider regardless of whether you applied that app for effects reporting.

If Your Take a look at Is Destructive

A negative examination end result implies that SARS-CoV-two, the virus that leads to COVID-19, was not located in your specimen. If you took the examination even though you had signs and adopted all directions very carefully, a negative end result ordinarily implies your recent ailment is not COVID-19.

On the other hand, it is achievable for a examination to give a negative end result in some people today who have COVID-19 (that is, a untrue negative). You could also examination negative if the sample was collected also early in your an infection. In this circumstance, you could examination optimistic later on all through your ailment. Focus on your signs and examination effects with your healthcare provider to ascertain if you will need adhere to-up tests.

If you have COVID-19 signs, primarily if you have been exposed to anyone who has COVID-19, you ought to quarantine according to CDC recommendations.

Patient calling doctors office

If Your Take a look at Is Optimistic

Explain to your healthcare provider about your optimistic examination end result and stay in speak to with them all through your ailment. To prevent spreading the virus to other individuals, adhere to CDC recommendations. See CDC’s steerage Isolate if You are Sick, which has info for a human being who assessments optimistic and has signs, and for a human being who does not have signs.

If Your Result Demonstrates Invalid or Mistake

Sometimes the effects are not apparent or are inconclusive, and the examination is not able to explain to you if your effects are optimistic or negative.

If the show on the at-household examination demonstrates an invalid end result or a examination mistake, the examination did not perform appropriately. If this comes about, please refer to the directions for use in the bundle insert and speak to the manufacturer for support.

Invalid effects can manifest for many explanations. Your specimen may perhaps not have been collected effectively or the tests instrument may perhaps have malfunctioned. On the other hand, these invalid effects ought to not come about frequently.

Regardless of what your examination effects are, you ought to usually critique the effects with your healthcare provider. Your healthcare provider will look at the examination end result collectively with your signs and achievable publicity in determining how to care for you.