When to get a COVID-19 PCR diagnostic test?

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 or have been in close contact with someone who tested positive, it’s important to get tested. You may also need a test after high-risk activities such as travel or attending a large gathering or be referred to get testing by a healthcare provider, local, or state health department.

The incubation period (the time between exposure to the virus and symptom onset) is generally 5-6 days but can take up to 14 days. For this reason, you should self-quarantine and wait at least five days before getting tested. The virus may not be detectable in your system in the early stages. If you have COVID-19 and got tested too soon, your result could come back negative, even though you have been infected.

What specimen types do you accept for PCR tests?

We accept the Saliva sample and the Nasopharyngeal sample for the RT-PCR testing. Please see the “Ordering & Collection” section for up-to-date information

What technology does DiaCarta use to test for COVID-19?

DiaCarta utilizes an assay called real-time reverse polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) to detect the SARS-CoV-2 virus in patient’s samples. Using primers directly from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we can amplify and detect even tiny quantities of the virus’s RNA.

What are the symptoms associated with COVID-19?

COVID-19 spreads easily from person to person, through droplets released into the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. COVID-19 symptoms can range from very mild to severe. It’s possible to have just a few symptoms or no symptoms at all.
Symptoms include:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

How long does it take for symptoms to appear, after you have been exposed to COVID-19 virus?

The length of time between a person becoming infected with the type of coronavirus that causes COVID-19 disease and developing symptoms can vary. Symptoms usually develop between 2-14 days after being exposed to the virus, with the average length of time being about 5 days.

Does DiaCarta’s PCR test detect “newer strains” of the Coronavirus?

DiaCarta has been regularly tracking mutations of the coronavirus throughout the pandemic, including a new variant strain of SARS-CoV-2 (VOC 202012/01 or B.1.1.7) in the UK and more recently in the US, to determine the impact it would have on our PCR test sensitivity. To date, we have not seen any impact. The B.1.1.7 strain is detectable by our current molecular testing.

What are the Isolation and Quarantine rules?

After a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 with symptoms, most people can safely be around others when the following are true:

  • 10 days since symptoms first appeared
  • 24 hours with no fever without the use of fever-reducing medications
  • Other symptoms of COVID-19 are improving

If you had a positive COVID-19 test result, but no symptoms, you can end isolation 10 days after your positive viral test. If your healthcare provider recommends additional testing, they will let you know when you can resume being around others based on your test results.

Patients with severe COVID-19 and immunocompromised patients might need to stay home longer than 10 days and up to 20 days after symptoms first appeared. Talk to your healthcare provider for information.

If you had close contact with someone with COVID-19, you should stay home for 14 days after the last exposure to that person. This does not apply to vaccinated persons or those who have had and recovered from COVID-19 within the last 3 months.

What about Vaccination and Prevention?

The FDA has given emergency use authorization for three COVID-19 vaccines, the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, and the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine.

A vaccine offers protection from the illness by creating an antibody response in your body. If you do still get COVID-19, vaccination will help reduce the severity of your illness and lower the risk of serious complications.

You can also reduce your risk of infection and slow the spread of COVID-19 by taking the following steps:

  • Keep at least 6 feet distance between yourself and people outside your household.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Avoid crowds and indoor spaces with poor ventilation.
  • Wear a face mask in spaces where it’s difficult to avoid close contact with others.
  • Avoid touching your face.
  • Stay home if you’re sick unless you’re going to get medical care.

Does everyone have the same immune response after vaccination?

Everyone’s immune response is different. People who are infected with the coronavirus or who are fully vaccinated show a decline in protection levels after 6 to 8 months of vaccination. It is still unclear how long the vaccine immunity lasts. To check your protective antibody levels, it is necessary to get an Antibody test.

When will I get my test order?

Free, standard ground shipping: Your order will be processed within 2 business days. Once your order ships, you’ll receive a confirmation email with tracking information and can expect your order to arrive within 3 business days.

Paid, expedited shipping: Expedited shipping is available at an additional cost.
Expedited orders will be processed within 1 business day. Once your order ships, you’ll receive a confirmation email with tracking information and can expect your order to arrive the next business day.

What is the turnaround time for RT-PCR testing?

  • DiaCarta’s RT-PCR Test takes 24 to 48 hours for results to return.
  • Your results will be provided to you through our secure online portal to view or print.

What is the cost of Diacarta’s RT-PCR test?

The total cost of the PCR test is $119
You get the following test kit contents once you book with DiaCarta.
Kit Contents: Alcohol surface cleaning pad, Lancet, Swab, Tube, Barcode, Shipping label, QR code.

How much does shipping cost?

DiaCarta offers free ground shipping on all orders. We make expedited overnight shipping available for quantities over at an additional charge.

Will my insurance cover this?

If you have COVID related symptoms and are under care of a physician or directly exposed to confirmed COVID positive cases, the cost is covered by insurance with no copay or deductible. For reasons outside of medical necessity or if you are asymptomatic copay and deductible costs will be applicable to your visit which you will pay at the time of the test. Please check with your insurance for full coverage.

What does FDA-Emergency Use Authorization(EUA) mean?

When there are no FDA-approved or cleared tests available, and other criteria are met, the FDA can make tests available under an emergency access mechanism called an Emergency Use Authorization(EUA).

The DiaCarta’s Coronavirus RT-PCR Test has been authorized for emergency use by FDA under EUA for use by authorized laboratories. The EUA for this test is supported by the Secretary of Health and Human Service’s(HHS’s) declaration that circumstances exist to justify the emergency use of in vitro diagnostics for the detection and/or diagnosis of the virus that causes COVID-19.

Why choose DiaCarta?

We provide Accurate and Affordable testing. We bring COVID tests directly to your home, clinic, or business. We make things easier by offering you a professional courier service for specimen collection and supply delivery designed around your practices’ needs. Our team is highly trained, discrete, and will schedule your test when and where you need it, even for last-minute travel arrangements

How is my privacy protected?

Keeping your data secure is important to us. All data is completely anonymized to ensure that your privacy is maintained throughout the process. We will not share your information with any third party. All samples are disposed of following analysis.