COVID-19 Testing Frequenty Asked Questions

 

COVID-19 TESTING FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

 

Why am I not being testing for COVID-19? 

Access to COVID-19 testing has improved, but is still limited.  Testing still potentially exposes the public and healthcare system to contagious cases and consumes limited personal protective equipment (PPE) and testing supplies.  We continue to follow the NH Division of Public Health Services (DPHS) and Centers for Disease Control (CDC) testing recommendations.

 

What are those recommendations?

The agencies continue to recommend that healthcare facilities prioritize testing for patients with symptoms.  Those patients include:

  • Healthcare workers and first responders
  • Family members of healthcare workers and first responders (because the virus impacts the ability for these individuals to return to work)
  • Any person residing in, or who has worked or visited, a long-term care facility (LTCF) or healthcare setting
  • Patients hospitalized with fever or respiratory illness
  • Patients who may have had close contact with a large number of people

 

I don’t fall into one of the guidelines above.  What do I do now? 

Patients NOT in one or more of the above groups with mild illness consistent with COVID-19, and who are not in need of medical care, do not need testing.  The condition can be managed at home.  Important information can be seen at the CDC website:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/caring-for-yourself-at-home.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/index.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/disinfecting-your-home.html

 

I had close contact with someone who had a confirmed case of COVID-19, but I don’t have any symptoms.  What do I do?

Stay home for 14 days from the last day of exposure that you had with the individual who tested positive for COVID-19.  If the positive patient is a household contact, the 14-day timeframe starts from the last day the person with symptoms is on home-isolation. Close contacts must still quarantine for 14 days even if they are tested and found to be negative for COVID-19 during the quarantine period.

 

I had close contact with someone who had a confirmed case of COVID-19.  I have symptoms.  What do I do?

Self-isolate at home until you meet the CDC’s “7days/72hours” guidance for discontinuation of home isolation for persons with COIVD-19:

At least seven days have passed since symptoms first appeared

AND

At least 72 hours (3 days) have passed since recovery – defined as resolution of a fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and improvement in respiratory symptoms

 

I have symptoms consistent with COVID-19, but I haven’t been in contact with anyone who tested positive.  What do I do?

If you are having symptoms and have questions, please call your primary care provider.  If you don’t have a primary care provider, please call 2-1-1 or your local primary care office.  As always, if you are experiencing an emergency call 9-1-1 or call ahead and visit your local Emergency Department. 

 

I would like more information.  Where should I look?

The CDC has a large amount of up-to-date resources at:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html