Coronavirus testing near me: How to find COVID-19 test sites and wait times
If you have COVID-19 symptoms, you'll need to consult a doctor and possibly get tested. Here's how to find a testing location.
Alison DeNisco RayomeManaging Editor
Managing Editor Alison DeNisco Rayome joined CNET in 2019, and is a member of the Home team. She is a co-lead of the CNET Tips and We Do the Math series, and manages the Home Tips series, testing out new hacks for cooking, cleaning and tinkering with all of the gadgets and appliances in your house. Alison was previously an editor at TechRepublic.
ExpertiseHome Tips, including cooking, cleaning and appliances hacksCredentials
National Silver Azbee Award for Impact/Investigative Journalism; National Gold Azbee Award for Online Single Topic Coverage by a Team; National Bronze Azbee Award for Web Feature Series
Access to reliable and accurate coronavirus testing can help control the spread of COVID-19, and will be necessary for the continuing effort to reopen the US and regaining some sense of "normal." So how do you find a testing location near you? And is it even possible to find out what the wait time is, so you're not in a car or tent or waiting room all day?
The type of COVID-19 test you take may differ depending on where you go: State and local public health departments have tests from the CDC, while other medical providers are getting tests developed by commercial manufacturers, according to the CDC.
Fighting coronavirus: COVID-19 tests, vaccine research, masks, ventilators and more
For drive-through testing centers that don't take appointments, unfortunately, there is often no way to find out a wait time other than to show up. You might check your state or local department of health's Twitter or Facebook accounts to find out if there are updates (for example, when Colorado was first offering drive-through testing, its Department of Public Health & Environment tweeted wait times).
Many drive-through testing centers have a set number of tests to give per day, so it's a good idea to arrive early if possible.
Watch this: Vaccines, antibody tests, treatments: The science of ending the pandemic
After you get tested, you'll be encouraged to self-isolate until you get results back over the phone (though some clinics are able to return results while you wait). How quickly you'll get those results depends on where you live, though. Thousands of people have waited more than a week for results due to a backlog of tests.
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.