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Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms like cough, fever, or other respiratory problems, regardless of vaccination status or prior infection, should call their healthcare provider for guidance and separate themselves from others. Non-vaccinated individuals who have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 should quarantine for 14 days from the last date they were exposed.
Public health recommends a full 14-day quarantine as the best way to reduce disease spread. However, CDC has two alternative options for shortening quarantine if you are having hardship by staying home. An exposed person may shorten quarantine in the following situations:
If you have received the full series of a COVID-19 vaccine and at least 14 days have passed since the final dose, you do not have to quarantine. However, you must monitor yourself for symptoms and if symptoms develop, isolate and get tested for COVID.
For information about FREE testing sites in the area, visit www.tchd.org/COVID-19Testing
Individuals with insurance
Call or email your healthcare provider, or a telehealth line or nurseline, to get their advice before going to any health facility.
Individuals with no insurance
Contact a free telehealth line or nurseline service
Get text messages that support how to manage your symptoms, access care, and more by using the Colorado COVID Symptom Support tool. Review general questions and answers on the state’s FAQ page.
Call your health care provider before going to the clinic or hospital to be tested. Ask your provider or local clinic if they offer telehealth visits, or call one of Colorado’s nurselines. Your healthcare provider may send you to a place that has testing available. Some testing sites require a referral and to schedule an appointment ahead of time. Check the details of each testing site online for the most up-to-date information.
These clinics accept patients regardless of insurance status.
We have published at updated guide to At-Home COVID-19 Testing. It it you will find information on potential costs, the type of tests, and different testing providers.
Testing kits are free of charge to all Coloradans who interact with the public at their jobs. Each kit comes with 6 individual tests to enable ongoing screening. You will be able to self test every 5 days to monitor any potential contraction of COVID-19. You can reorder a new kit 20 days after your last order.
Watch the Binax At-Home How To video in Spanish
The CDC recommends COVID-19 Testing for:
CDC recommends that anyone with any signs or symptoms of COVID-19 get tested, regardless of vaccination status or prior infection. If you get tested because you have symptoms or were potentially exposed to the virus, you should stay away from others pending test results and follow the advice of your health care provider or a public health professional.
More is available information on who should get tested and when from the CDC.
A negative test on a particular day does not guarantee that a person will not develop COVID-19 at any point in the future. Quarantine can end after Day 7 if no symptoms have developed during daily monitoring and if you have a negative molecular or antigen test. The test must be collected within 2 days of the planned end of quarantine (in other words, 5 days after exposure), and a negative test result must be back before ending quarantine Find where you can get tested at www.tchd.org/COVID-19Testing
Watch this video to learn about the difference between the tests available.
People who have tested positive for COVID-19 within the past 3 months and recovered do not need to get tested following an exposure as long as they do not develop new symptoms. Check with your healthcare provider if you think you have been re-exposed after 3 months of your last positive COVID-19 test and have developed symptoms.As COVID-19 continues to circulate, individuals who had a positive COVID-19 test may be re-exposed to the virus. Many questions about immunity after infection remain and scientific studies are underway to determine whether someone who had an infection before can get be reinfected. Find where you can get tested.
People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Older adults and people who have severe underlying medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at higher risk for developing more serious complications from COVID-19 illness.
Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus.
People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
This list does not include all possible symptoms. CDC will continue to update this list as we learn more about COVID-19. Find where you can get tested at www.tchd.org/COVID-19Testing
These community health centers provide primary care services as well as COVID-19 testing services.
Other FREE testing locations are listed on our testing site at www.tchd.org/COVID-19Testing.
The following private providers have indicated that they are able to provide COVID-19 testing. For more information, please contact these companies directly. Because they are private providers and not operated by the State of Colorado, neither the state nor the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is responsible for the information about or operations of these testing sites:
You can find additional testing locations at www.tchd.org/COVID-19Testing.
COVID-19 testing is covered by all major insurance plans. Contact your health insurer for specific information. If you do not have insurance, review our list of free testing sites.
For assistance with disputing medical bills first contact your insurer, and if problems continue to exist you can reach out to the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative’s (CCHI) Consumer Assistance Program or the Colorado Division of Insurance. Find where you can get tested at www.tchd.org/COVID-19Testing
Antibody or serology tests look for antibodies in your blood to determine if you had a past infection with the virus that causes COVID-19.
A COVID-19 antibody test should not be used to diagnose a current infection with the virus. It can take up to 1 to 3 weeks after the infection for your body to make antibodies.
A positive antibody test is presumed to mean a person has been infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 at some point in the past. It does not mean they are currently infected.
You may test positive for antibodies even if you have never had symptoms of COVID-19. This can happen if you had an infection without symptoms, which is called an asymptomatic infection.
Having antibodies to the virus that causes COVID-19 may provide protection from getting infected with the virus again. But even if it does, we do not know how much protection the antibodies may provide or how long this protection may last.
You should continue to protect yourself and others since you could get infected with the virus again.
A negative antibody tests means you may not have ever had COVID-19 infection. Or, you could have had a current infection or been recently infected and your body had not made antibodies at the time your blood was drawn for the test.
Read more about testing for past COVID-19 infections on the CDC website.
Find where you can get tested at www.tchd.org/COVID-19Testing.
Most testing sites ask that you bring the following items to get tested:
Review the testing site’s website before you get tested. Not all items are required at every site and some sites may require additional information.
The health care provider where you got tested will give you your testing results. Some sites have a phone number or portal for you to access and get your results.
When you get tested ask how you will be able to get your test results.
Lab turn-around times vary based on where the test is being processed. When you get tested, ask what their test/lab turn-around time is. You can also ask when registering or pre-registering so you will know what to expect. Lab turn-around times can change.
Rapid antigen testing can be useful to quickly help determine if you have COVID-19 is widely available in the Denver Metro Area. Many urgent care centers offer rapid testing. We encourage you to call the site before you go to find out if they offer rapid testing.
Antigen tests with positive results are usually highly accurate. However, negative results may need to be confirmed with a molecular test. If you don’t have symptoms of COVID-19 but need to be tested, a molecular test may be the better test to use.
To find a location near you, visit the Colorado COVID Testing Locator.
Some states and countries require a negative test before entry. Often, these tests must be completed within 24-72 hours before arrival. In some cases, the tests must be a molecular test and rapid antigen tests will not be accepted. Find out which type of test the travel location will accept. It is a good idea to check with your airline before you go to make sure you can enter/exit your destination easily. Learn more about testing requirements for travel traveling at the Centers for Disease Control Testing and Air Travel Webpage.