Everything you need to know about getting tested for COVID-19 in Seattle

Feb 1 2021, 1:10 pm

Although the first case of COVID-19 appeared in Washington last February, the virus is very much still active around the state.

It’s important for all Seattleites to continue flattening the curve by physical distancing and wearing face masks whenever possible.

Here’s all the information you need to get tested in Seattle:

When you should get tested

If you think you have been exposed to coronavirus, or you are displaying any symptoms, the Washington State Department of Health is urging that you get tested.

Health officials say that the most concerning symptoms are cough or shortness of breath, but anyone with two or more of the following symptoms should also be evaluated for a test: fever, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, or loss of taste or smell.

What you need to get tested

Testing is available to all, regardless of your citizenship or immigration status. Be sure to have a photo ID with your date of birth handy, as well as an insurance card if you have one.

You do not need an insurance card or a doctor’s note to schedule a test. If you have insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid, however, you must provide this information. You will not be charged for the test.

What kind of tests are available 

The Washington State Department of Health uses a molecular RT-PCR test that detects COVID-19. It is not an antibody test. The sample is collected using a nasopharyngeal swab for adults. Different swabs are used for children that swab the front of the nasal cavity.

How quickly results will become available

Expect results in 48-72 hours.

Where to get tested

King County

Additional coronavirus testing can be conducted through primary care providers; however, those who don’t have a provider who administers the test can call the King County COVID-19 call center at 206-477-3977 to locate a test site.

Take-home COVID-19 tests are also now available for purchase at Safeway Albertsons pharmacies for $139.99.

Alyssa TherrienAlyssa Therrien

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