SPANISH: Pida Hoy Mismo Sus Pruebas Caseras de COVID-19
San Rafael, CA – With COVID-19 home test kits now available from the federal government, Marin County Public Health is urging residents to log onto COVIDtests.gov and place an order.
Every household in the United States is eligible to receive four free at-home COVID-19 tests. The tests should arrive by mail within 12 days once ordered. Results of the nasal swab tests take about 30 minutes.
Regular testing of residents with symptoms, and isolation for at least five days for those with positive results, is a critical facet of stopping the spread of COVID-19. The recent shortage of laboratory-processed PCR testing and its longer wait times for results increases the value of free at-home tests.
“Getting as many tests as possible into the hands of Marin residents will benefit all of us,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County Public Health Officer. “The federal government is stepping forward to meet our practical local needs. Let’s make the most of it.”
Rapid antigen tests have proven effective to detect Omicron infections and reliably detect the virus in infectious people.
Regardless of vaccination status, residents are urged to seek testing if they are feeling sick. Marin County Public Health does not recommend confirmatory PCR tests following a rapid test with a positive result. With the high prevalence of Omicron, a positive home test does not require confirmation. Anyone who is considered a close contact should test three to five days after last exposure to a positive person.
Marin County remains among the highest-vaccinated counties in the nation. Nearly 94% of residents aged 5 and older have completed a vaccine series.
Because the Omicron surge is beginning to plateau locally, the high demand for testing in Marin is short-term. That increases the urgency to act promptly to secure tests.
Due to high testing demand, there has been an increased number of pop-up testing sites across the Bay Area that may not be fully credentialed to perform testing. To ensure residents are receiving testing from credited sites we encourage the community to seek testing from their healthcare provider or from sites listed at coronavirus.marinhhs.org/testing.
The No. 1 protection against COVID-19 remains vaccination; in Marin, those who are unvaccinated are seven times more likely to be infected and 23 times more likely to be hospitalized. To find a vaccination appointment see GetVaccinatedMarin.org.