Test Options

Nasopharyngeal swab, real-time polymerase chain reaction test (“PCR”)

Positive PCR test for SARS-CoV-2 generally confirms the diagnosis of COVID-19; however, tests may remain positive long after a patient is no longer infectious due to prolonged detection of RNA

 

PCR tests are the recommended method for diagnosing current COVID-19 infection 

PROS

• Highly accurate in its ability to detect a positive case (i.e. high-sensitivity) and in its ability to detect a negative case (i.e. high-specificity) 

CONS

• Higher cost due to the need for highly specialized diagnostic laboratory equipment 

• Processing PCR tests may take days 

• Nasopharyngeal swabs may be physically uncomfortable for some individuals 

Portable, rapid point-of-care antigen test (“Antigen”) 

Negative Antigen test for SARS-CoV-2 generally eliminates the likelihood of a diagnosis of COVID-19 

 

PROS

• Results can be delivered in as little as 15 minutes, while individual remains on-site 

• Does not require specialized laboratory personnel 

CONS

• Less than ideal accuracy in its ability to detect a positive case (i.e. low-sensitivity), but 

highly accurate in its ability to detect a positive case (i.e. high-specificity) 

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