County of Marin - News Releases - COVID-19 Testing

For Immediate Release
December 17, 2020

More Free COVID-19 Testing on its Way in Marin

County partners with Curative to collect self-administered oral swab test

San Rafael, CA – Free COVID-19 testing by oral swab is coming to Marin County. Five rotating locations will offer coronavirus testing by online appointment for anybody, whether insured or not, as early as December 21.

The County of Marin has partnered with Curative, which offers a novel coronavirus test that has a higher clinical sensitivity than nasal cavity swab tests. The simple, painless test is self-collected, and results are returned within 48 hours by email or text. To date, Curative has distributed more than 5 million test results nationwide and is processing about 70,000 test kits per day with plenty of capacity.

Local test collection locations will rotate around Marin County, and online appointments are required via the Curative website. Appointment times are available beginning four days before opening day at each location.

Here’s the schedule:

  • Mondays, starting December 21: Bolinas Fire Station, 100 Mesa Road, 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.; San Geronimo Valley Community Center, 6350 Sir Francis Drake Boulevard, 2-4 p.m.
  • Tuesdays, starting December 22: United Market, 100 Red Hill Avenue, San Anselmo, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Wednesdays, starting January 6: Sausalito City Hall, 420 Litho Street, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Thursdays, starting January 7: Piper Park, 250 Doherty Drive, Larkspur, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Fridays, starting January 8: Novato Library, 1720 Novato Boulevard, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Curative was founded to develop sepsis tests in January 2020 and pivoted to COVID-19 in early March 2020, addressing the urgent need for test development and production. Curative’s test involves having a person cough first, releasing the aerosols from the upper and lower respiratory tracts. The patient swabs saliva from the inside of the cheek and the roof of the mouth, then seals the swab in a secure container and returns it to a medical professional to be sent to a lab. The test is done without the test recipient coming into close contact with others, eliminating the need for frequent personal protective equipment (PPE) changes. 

Since testing began for COVID-19 last winter, 228,590 tests have been recorded in Marin County (counting multiple tests by a single person) and 6,561 have come back positive. Residents should be aware of their options for testing as case counts rise. An updated list of local testing locations is on the Marin County Public Health website.

In addition to the new Curative testing locations, residents can access testing through offices of health care providers, dedicated test sites, and Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved home testing kits. Mail-in home testing options are gaining in popularity as a convenient alternative to traveling to a testing site. Families with returning college-aged students can have a test waiting at home.

Anyone seeking a COVID-19 test should first contact a health care provider. Most providers now offer testing for their patients and are required to do so under California public health regulations.

The Public Health Division of Marin County Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) offers the following considerations for who should get tested.

  • Those who have symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Those who have had close contact (within 6 feet for a total of 15 minutes or more) with someone with confirmed COVID-19.
  • Those who have been asked or referred to get testing by a health care provider, local health department or state health department.
  • Essential workers who have regular contact with the public should be tested up to monthly whether or not they have symptoms.


Dr. Matthew Willis
Public Health Officer
Health and Human Services

3240 Kerner Blvd.
San Rafael, CA 94901
(415) 473-4163
Email: Dr. Matthew Willis
Marin HHS website