County of Marin - News Releases - COVID-19 Self-Testing

For Immediate Release
October 14, 2021

Online Form Created for COVID-19 Self-Tests

Goal with reporting results is to track virus’ progress in Marin more thoroughly

San Rafael, CA – With over-the-counter COVID-19 self-tests becoming more widely available, Marin County Public Health has created an online form so results from those tests can be recorded along with all other tests conducted at laboratories.

A closeup view of a person's hands opening a package that contains a COVID-19 self-test.Self-tests add convenience for those who do not live close to a COVID-19 testing location, have mobility or transportation issues, or need results immediately.

Reporting of results from home-based tests will connect people who test positive for COVID-19 to supportive resources and will assist with contact tracing efforts to limit community spread. It will also provide additional information on COVID-19 activity in Marin.

Self-tests that show immediate results have been available at selected retail outlets and online since the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorization their use in late 2020. Self-tests add convenience for those who do not live close to a facility that handles COVID-19 testing, have mobility or transportation issues, or need results immediately.

“We want to remove any barriers to testing in our community, and increased access to self-tests is a great step forward,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County Public Health Officer. “At the same time, we need to see what’s happening in the community to guide our ongoing response. We rely on residents to report home testing results to see where cases are arising, and to make sure those who are infected have the supports they need.”

Laboratories that process COVID-19 test results are required to report results to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and Marin County Public Health (MCPH). Test results have been compiled ever since COVID-19 tests became available in March 2020 and have been critical to localized surveillance figures. However, since self-tests provide a result without the use of a laboratory, those results are not reported to CDPH and MCPH, creating a void in critical community COVID-19 data.

The brief online form collects information about the test result, reason for the test, the date, the brand, basic demographic factors, and contact information. Public Health has privacy and security measures in place to safeguard personally identifiable information.

Self-testing kits require the user to take a sample from the nose, cheek, or saliva and provide immediate results. The method provides results within minutes, which is why the self-tests are sometimes called rapid tests.

Willis provided an overview COVID-19 tests in a Marin County Public Health video. Learn more about testing basics on Public Health website or the FDA’s website.


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