Testing is available for people with and without symptoms. If you have symptoms and/or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive, please follow the isolation/quarantine instructions until you can be tested and receive test results.
Do not go to a hospital emergency room unless you are having a medical emergency, and call ahead if possible.
All three testing types--PCR, Antigen and Antibody--are available in Shasta County. Learn more about each type with this helpful handout from CDPH.
Misinformation has been circulated online about swabs used in test kits, which is addressed in this Swab Safety flyer, shown at right. Swabs sterilized with ethylene oxide do not present a health risk, even when used twice weekly.
Should I get tested?
Testing is free for anyone, with and without symptoms.
Testing is an important surveillance tool that helps public health know how the disease is spreading in our community. Test results should just take a few days to come back. If you don't have symptoms and are not a close contact of a person who has tested positive, there's no need to self-quarantine while awaiting results.
What happens when someone tests positive, and what's the difference between isolation and quarantine?
This page provides an overview of isolation and quarantine and explains what to do in either situation.
Could my test return a false positive?
In Shasta County, tests most commonly used to confirm COVID-19 are molecular (PCR) tests. Data published by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for PCR tests show that false positives and false negatives are unlikely to occur with this type of test, especially false positives. However, it is possible that false negatives may occur if the person is very early in their illness, or if the sample collected from the person was not adequate.
Will the flu shot or a cold make me test positive for COVID-19?
No. The PCR tests that are used in all confirmed COVID-19 cases in Shasta County only identify COVID-19. Flu shots do not contain the virus that causes COVID-19. You will not test positive for COVID-19 if you have the flu, a cold or another coronavirus.