Stay up to date on where you can get tested in Connecticut, types of tests, and what to do when you receive your results.
Where can I find COVID-19 testing in Connecticut?
There are many walk-up testing sites available in Connecticut. Please call 2-1-1 or visit the CT Testing Locator to find a testing location near you.
Who should get tested for COVID-19?
If you are experiencing any symptoms that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has identified for COVID-19, you need to get tested.
People with COVID-19 can have mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms can appear two to 14 days after being exposed to the virus. Symptoms can include: cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever or chills, muscle or body aches, sore throat, headache, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, runny nose or stuffy nose, fatigue, or recent loss of taste or smell. Children have similar symptoms to adults and generally have mild illness.
In certain situations, it is recommended that you be tested if you do not have symptoms if you are a health care worker, first responder, congregate care facility resident or staff (includes nursing homes, assisted living facilities, managed residential communities, and correctional institutions), homeless, or living in communities at high risk. Some of these situations include being exposed to someone with COVID-19 without adequate protection or detection of asymptomatic spread during an outbreak.
NOTE: The most up-to-date guidance from DPH about who should be tested can be found at https://portal.ct.gov/Coronavirus/Covid-19-Knowledge-Base/COVID-19-Testing.
What type of test should I get for COVID-19?
There are three types of tests available for COVID-19: nucleic acid and antigen tests are used to diagnose a person with current infection with the SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19; and an antibody test that helps determine if someone was infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the past.
If you are having symptoms for COVID-19, or are not sick but have had unprotected prolonged close contact with someone with COVID-19, you should have a nucleic acid diagnostic test.
What happens if I test positive?
- Stay at home, wash your hands frequently, wear a face mask (or a cloth face covering if a mask is not available), stay away from other people in your home, and clean “high-touch” surfaces (doorknobs, railings, phones, counters, faucet handles) every day.
- Your name and contact information will be shared with public health staff at the Connecticut Department of Public Health to help with contact investigation.
- Someone from the Connecticut Department of Public Health or your local health department will call you and ask you for a list of people you have had close contact with while you were sick or just before you got sick.
- A contact tracer will only contact you for health matters related to COVID-19 and not for any other reason.
You can leave your home if these two things have happened:
- You must have had no fever for 72 hours (three days) without the use of fever reducing medications, and your respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness of breath) must be getting better; and
At least 10 days have passed since your symptoms first appeared.
- If you had no symptoms but tested positive, you should stay home until 10 days after your positive test.
- If any of your symptoms get worse, call your healthcare provider.
What happens if I test negative?
If you start having any symptoms of COVID-19 after the test, call your healthcare provider and ask if you should be tested again.
- Wash your hands often and practice social distancing (six feet between you and other people).
- Wear a cloth face covering when you leave your house.
- If you get sick, stay home from work.
- Clean “high-touch” surfaces (doorknobs, railings, phones, counters, faucet handles) every day.
If you test negative for COVID-19, you most likely were not infected at the time of your test. It is also possible that you were tested very early in your infection and you could test positive later. It is also possible you could be exposed later and get sick. This means that even with a negative test, it is important for healthcare workers and others who work with vulnerable populations to stay home from work while experiencing any symptoms.