COVID-19 Testing FAQs

Content on this page has been derived from a variety of resources including, but not limited to, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Food and Drug Administration, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services,  and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  This content is subject to change as more information becomes available on the COVID-19 pandemic.  Due to the frequency of changes amidst the pandemic, this information should be compared to the latest recommendations from those agencies providing guidance on this topic.

Molecular (Diagnostic) Testing:

Can you provide specifics regarding the SARS-CoV-2 molecular diagnostic test provided by Aegis Sciences Corporation?

  • Testing Method: Real Time Reverse-Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction (Real Time RT-PCR). 
    • Aegis is approved to test and report COVID-19 testing in all fifty states and offers a validated, FDA EUA authorized COVID-19 diagnostic test.  Aegis’ SARS-CoV-2, qPCR has been authorized by FDA under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for use by authorized laboratories. This test has been validated by Laboratory in accordance with the FDA's Guidance Document (Policy for Diagnostic Tests for Coronavirus Disease-2019 during the Public Health Emergency, FDA-2020-D-0987) issued on March 16,2020. FDA independent review of this validation is pending.
  • Aegis' in-house validation completed in accordance with the FDA’s guidelines demonstrated
    • Limit of detection: 0.4 copies of virus/microliter (µl) of sample
    • 100% concordance with all negative samples
    • >99% accuracy with contrived samples
  • Specimen Collection: Nasopharyngeal, oropharyngeal, nasal specimens to be collected in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and New York State-issued guidelines; viral transport media required for assurance of specimen stability for up to 7 days at room temperature during transit
    • Collection Device: iClean Specimen Collection Swab
    • Viral Transport Media: PrimeStore® MTM
  • Turnaround time for Results: Average 24 hours.  If repeat analysis needed, may be in the 36-48 hour range
  • Cost: $100 per test (same for all CPT codes)
  • Coding: U0003
  • Patient and Provider Fact Sheets are located on our website (aegislabs.com)

How is Aegis authorized to complete molecular testing for SARS- CoV-2?

  • The FDA has created guidance  that provides framework for laboratories certified under CLIA to perform high-complexity testing to begin molecular testing to diagnose SARS-CoV-2.
  • The FDA is actively working with test developers and issues Emergency Use Authorizations (EUAs) frequently for EUA requests with sufficient supporting data.

How do I decide if a patient needs to be tested for COVID-19?

  • Per the CDC's "Criteria to Guide Evaluation and Laboratory Testing for COVID-19”:
    • Clinicians should use their judgment to determine if a patient has signs and symptoms compatible with COVID-19, which may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus, and whether the patient should be tested. Asymptomatic infection with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, has been reported. 
    • Many patients with confirmed COVID-19 have developed fever and/or symptoms of acute respiratory illness (e.g., cough, difficulty breathing) but some people may present with other symptoms as well (e.g., fever, chills, shaking, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, new loss of taste/smell). 
    • Other considerations that may guide testing are epidemiologic factors such as known exposure to an individual who has tested positive for SARS-CoV-2, and the occurrence of local community transmission or transmission within a specific setting/facility (e.g., nursing homes) of COVID-19.  Clinicians are encouraged to test for other causes of respiratory illness.

Which providers have the capability to order COVID-19 diagnostic testing?

  • The CDC recommends that all testing for SARS-CoV-2 be conducted in consultation with a healthcare provider.
  • The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued guidance on temporary flexibilities afforded to providers and facilities in fighting COVID-19.  Physician extenders may have increased ordering capabilities. Supervisory guidelines may be altered, including for resident trainees.  Telehealth opportunities are also increased.  Physicians and extenders should consult their local state boards to ensure that any COVID-19-related practice initiatives align with state law and the provider's scope of practice.

Has there been any guidance regarding the "best" time for a molecular test to diagnose a patient with SARS-CoV-2?

  • At this time, guidance varies regarding the most appropriate time to test patients.  Although we are still awaiting larger clinical trials to gain greater understanding of the virus, some preliminary evidence is available.  An overview of this information has been provided by the Sanford Guide online.
    • Mean incubation time is estimated to be ~5 days after exposure (range 4.1 - 7.0 days, but as short as 36 hours or as long as 14 days).  Transmission can occur from an infected person who is asymptomatic (prior to onset of symptoms), although transmission is likely more efficient once symptoms develop.
    • Viral loads collected in patients with SARS-CoV-2 were highest in the early symptomatic period, declining slowly and remained detectable into the second or third week after onset of illness, despite resolution of symptoms.
    • Seroconversion, or detection of antibodies, was not followed by a rapid decline in viral RNA.  Thus, it would be possible for a patient with detectable antibodies present to still cause viral transmission.

Where can I seek out guidance in order to determine how to move forward with diagnostic testing for COVID-19?

  • Per the CDC's "Criteria to Guide Evaluation and Laboratory Testing for COVID-19”:
    • Clinicians considering diagnostic testing of people with possible COVID-19 should continue to work with their local and state health departments to coordinate testing through public health laboratories, or work with commercial or clinical laboratories using diagnostic tests authorized for emergency use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Do I need to wear personal protective equipment (PPE) while collecting a patient's specimen?

  • The CDC recommends that proper infection control be maintained and PPE be used while collecting specimens within 6 feet of patients suspected to be infected with SARS-CoV-2.
    • PPE includes an N95 or higher-level respirator (or facemask if a respirator is not available), eye protection, gloves, and a gown, when collecting specimens.
  • For providers who are handling specimens, but are not directly involved in collection (e.g. self-collection) and not working within 6 feet of the patient, follow Standard Precautions; gloves are recommended. Healthcare personnel are recommended to wear a form of source control (facemask or cloth face covering) at all times while in the healthcare facility.
    • PPE use can be minimized through patient self-collection while the healthcare provider maintains at least 6 feet of separation.

How will Aegis be reporting results?

Results will be reported as "positive", "negative", or "indeterminate." If a result is reported as indeterminate, then it has undergone two rounds of testing, and neither positive or negative results were reportable.  

I collected a sample for a patient, and the results were negative. What does that mean?

  • According to the CDC, a negative test for COVID-19 by a viral test means that the individual was not infected at the time the sample was collected.  However, this does not mean that the individual will not get sick.  The test results only means that the individual did not have COVID-19 at the time of testing.
  • Proper collection of specimens is the most important step in the laboratory diagnosis of infectious diseases. A specimen that is not collected correctly may lead to false negative test results.  Additional information from the CDC regarding specimen collection is available here.

Are there diagnostic tests that have been approved by the FDA for use at the point-of-care?

Managing patients that are positive for SARS-Cov-2

* CDC guidance for COVID-19 may be adapted by state and local health departments to respond to rapidly changing local circumstances.*

When may a patient with COVID-19 who has symptoms that was directed to care for themselves at home discontinue isolation?

  • Symptom-Based Strategy
    • Resolution of fever for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing medications, and with improvement of other symptoms and,
    • At least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.
      • A limited number of persons with severe illness may produce replication-competent virus beyond 10 days that may warrant extending duration of isolation and precautions for up to 20 days after symptom onset; consider consultation with infection control experts.
  • Test-Based Strategy for discontinuing isolation could be considered for persons who are severely immunocompromised1, in consultation with infectious disease experts. For all others, a test-based strategy is no longer recommended except to discontinue isolation or other precautions earlier than would occur under the symptom-based strategy outlined above.
  • For persons previously diagnosed with symptomatic COVID-19 who remain asymptomatic after recovery, retesting is not recommended within 3 months after the date of symptom onset for the initial COVID-19 infection. In addition, quarantine is not recommended in the event of close contact with an infected person.

When may a patient with COVID-19 who has not had symptoms that was directed to care for themselves at home discontinue isolation?

  • Isolation and other precautions can be discontinued 10 days after the date of their first positive RT-PCR test for SARS-CoV-2 RNA.
    • The date of first positive RT-PCR test for SARS-CoV-2 RNA should be used in place of the date of symptom onset.

  • Test-Based Strategy is no longer recommended except to discontinue isolation or precautions earlier than would occur under the strategy outlined in Part 1, above.
    • For persons who are severely immunocompromised, a test-based strategy could be considered in consultation with infectious diseases experts.

Are there certain patient populations that may be required to remain in isolation longer in order to minimize the chance of prolonged viral transmission?

  • A limited number of persons with severe illness may produce replication-competent virus beyond 10 days that may warrant extending duration of isolation and precautions for up to 20 days after symptom onset; consider consultation with infection control experts.

Access to Care

What telehealth services are available to my patients while face-to-face visits are restricted?

  • The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is covering a broad range of telehealth services during the Public Health Emergency, including many services medical providers may perform in conjunction with ordering diagnostic testing for COVID-19. 
    • New patient visits – E/M 99201 – 99205 
    • Established patient visits – E/M 99211-99215 
  • Eligible practitioners include: physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and other authorized providers under applicable state laws 
  • Types of virtual services included/covered: 

    Type of Service

    What is the Service

    HCPCS/CPT Code

    Patient Relationship with Provider

    Medicare Telehealth Visits

    A visit with a provider that uses telecommunication systems between a provider and a patient

    Common telehealth services include: 

    • 99201-99215 (Office or other outpatient visits)
    • G0425-G0427 (Telehealth consultations, emergency department or initial inpatient)
    • G0406-G0408 (Follow-up inpatient telehealth consultations furnished to beneficiaries in hospitals or SNFs)
    • Complete list is located here.

    For new* or established patients


    *to the extent the 1135 waiver requires an established relationship, HHS will not conduct audits to ensure that such a prior relationship existed for claims submitted during this public health emergency

    Virtual Check-In

    A brief (5-10) minutes) check in with your practitioner via telephone or other telecommunications device to decide whether an office visit or other service is needed.  A remote evaluation of recorded video and/or images submitted by an established patient.

    HCPCS code G2012

    HCPCS code G2010

    For established patients.

    E-Visits

    A communication between a patient and their provider through an online patient portal.

    99421

    99422

    99423

    G2061

    G2062

    G2063

    For established patients

    I'm relatively new to telehealth and I'm concerned about a potential HIPAA violation. Is there guidance available on this topic?

    • The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is responsible for enforcing certain regulations issued under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), as amended by the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, to protect the privacy and security of protected health information, namely the HIPAA Privacy, Security and Breach Notification Rules (the HIPAA Rules).
    • OCR will exercise its enforcement discretion and will not impose penalties for noncompliance with the regulatory requirements under the HIPAA Rules against covered health care providers in connection with the good faith provision of telehealth during the COVID-19 nationwide public health emergency.  This notification is effective immediately.

    Can you provide information about the services hospitals are able to provide in temporary expansion sites?

    • CMS has a new initiative referred to as "Hospital Without Walls” that allows for
      • Off-site patient screening permitted for hospitals, psychiatric hospitals, and critical access hospitals  
      • Temporary expansion sites permitted allowing hospitals and provider-based departments to establish and classify additional locations as part of the hospital

    Can a patient be seen by me or my office staff solely for the purpose of being assessed or tested for COVID-19?

    • CMS has finalized an interim policy to compensate physicians for COVID-19 assessments and specimen collection performed by their clinical staff, even when the patient receives no other services. The Interim Final Rule states: 
      • For the duration of the COVID-19 [Public Health Emergency (PHE)], we are therefore finalizing on an interim basis that when the services described by CPT code 99211 for a level 1 E/M visit are furnished for the purpose of a COVID-19 assessment and specimen collection, the code can be billed for both new and established patients. We believe this policy will support expanded access to COVID-19 testing, and provide appropriate payment for COVID-19 testing-related services furnished by physician and other practitioners. This policy will allow physicians and practitioners to bill for services provided by clinical staff to assess symptoms and take specimens for COVID-19 laboratory testing for all patients, not just established patients. We note that a physician or practitioner cannot bill for services provided by auxiliary clinical staff unless those staff meet all the requirements to furnish services "incident to” services, as described in 42 CFR 410.26 and further described in section 60 of Chapter 15 Covered Medical and other Health Services in the Medicare Benefit Policy Manual 100-02. We further note that we adopted an interim final policy to permit the direct supervision requirement to be met through virtual presence of the supervising physician or practitioner using interactive audio and video technology for the duration of the PHE (85 FR 19245). CMS-5531-IFC, 188 

    I'm interested in offsite assessment of patients that are concerned about COVID-19. Am I able to set up a Drive-Thru testing site?

    • In addition to the telehealth options discussed above, COVID-19 screening can also take place through a designated external triage station at a physician's practice or other designated locations within the community. Billing and coding for these face-to-face outpatient services is based on existing standards for new and established outpatient services. 
    • While the intent of telephone, virtual check-in and online digital E/M is to limit potential transmission of COVID-19 to patients and healthcare workers alike, there may be circumstances where face-to-face physician services occur in a temporary outside assessment center. 
    • Specimen collection via throat swabbing can be performed within a medical practice, at community or medical practice drive-thru sites, or other designated locations.  
    • Licensed staff trained in triage protocol can determine which patients can be managed safely at home vs. those that need to be seen at a healthcare facility. 
    • Patients must have an authorized medical provider's order to receive COVID-19 testing. 
    • Criteria for patients that should go to drive-thru testing may vary from state-to-state. 

    If I set up a Drive-Thru testing center, how should I direct my patients to utilize this testing process?

    • Patients will be guided by road signs/cones directing them to keep their windows up and follow a series of cones 
    • Patients will be directed to a tent where a healthcare lab worker will use a microphone to remind them to keep their window up 
    • Lab worker will ask how many people in the car will be getting tested 
    • Patient(s) will be asked to hold up their photo ID and insurance card to the window for a picture 
    • A label will be generated for their sample 
    • A nurse or provider will advise the patient to roll their window down just a crack, tilt their head back and the back of their throat will be swabbed 
    • Patients roll up their window and depart 

    Serologic (Antibody) Testing

    What is the CDC referring to when mentioning a test for "past infection?"

    • Antibody blood tests, also called antibody tests or serology tests, check the blood by looking for antibodies, which show if someone had a previous infection with the virus. Depending on when someone was infected and the timing of the test, the test may not find antibodies in someone with a current COVID-19 infection. Antibodies are proteins that help fight off infections. Antibody tests should not be used as the only way to diagnose someone as being currently sick with COVID-19.
    • We do not know yet if the antibodies that result from infection with SARS-CoV-2 can protect someone from reinfection with this virus (immunity) or how long antibodies to the virus will protect someone. Scientists are conducting research to answer those questions.

    What directives are being provided on use of serologic testing in clinical practice at this time?

    • According to the Infectious Disease Society of America, serology testing for SARS-CoV-2 can be used for: 
      • Detection of PCR-negative cases, especially for patients who present late with a very low viral load below the detection limit of RT-PCR assays, or when lower respiratory tract sampling is not possible
      • Identification of convalescent plasma donors
      • Epidemiologic studies of disease prevalence in the community
      • Verification of vaccine response once antibody correlate(s) of protection identified (a vaccine for SARS-CoV-2 is not currently available.
    • Please continue to check this page for more updates regarding the role of serologic testing in clinical practice as more research becomes available.

    What does it mean if a patient has positive antibody test results?

    • A positive test result shows that a patient has antibodies that likely resulted from an infection with SARS-CoV-2, or possibly a related coronavirus.
    • It's unclear if those antibodies can provide protection (immunity) against getting infected again. This means that we do not know at this time if antibodies make patients immune to the virus.
    • If the patient has no symptoms, it is unlikely that he/she has an active infection and no additional follow-up is needed.
    • If a patient has symptoms and meets other guidelines for testing, he/she would need another type of test called a nucleic acid test, or viral test. An antibody test alone cannot tell if a patient has an active case of COVID-19.
    • It's possible you might test positive for antibodies and you might not have or have ever had symptoms of COVID-19. This is known as having an asymptomatic infection, or an infection without symptoms.

    What does it mean if a patient has negative antibody test results?

    • If a patient tests negative for COVID-19 antibodies, he/she probably did not have a previous infection that has gotten better. However, he/she could have a current infection. It's possible that the patient could still get sick if exposed to the virus recently, since antibodies don't show up for 1 to 3 weeks after infection.
    • Some patients may take even longer to develop antibodies, and some patients may not develop antibodies.
    • If a patient has symptoms and meets other guidelines for testing, he/she would need another type of test called a nucleic acid test, or viral test. An antibody test alone cannot tell if a patient has an active case of COVID-19.

    Sample Logistics

    Will Aegis provide instructions on how to collect and ship specimens?

    • A comprehensive set of instructions have been developed for specimen collection and shipment. Contact Aegis with any questions on this process at 1-800-533-7052.

    Are there any additional resources available on specimen collection?

    • The CDC has provided an overview of appropriate specimens that should be collected for SARS-CoV-2 testing as well as the collection process.
    • Additionally, the New England Journal of Medicine has provided an instructional video on collection of nasopharyngeal specimens.

    Are Aegis personnel capable of collecting SARS-CoV-2 specimens?

    • Aegis personnel are not able to collect specimens for SARS-CoV-2 diagnostic testing.  At this time, the CDC recommends that specimens be collected either by a healthcare professional or under the supervision of a healthcare professional.

    Additional Links and Resources

    Has guidance been issues on how testing should be utilized prior to elective procedures?

    • CMS has provided guidance on re-opening facilities that provide elective procedures.
      • All patients must be screened for potential symptoms of COVID-19 prior to entering the NCC facility, and staff must be routinely screened for potential symptoms as noted above.
      • When adequate testing capability is established, patients should be screened by laboratory testing before care, and staff working in these facilities should be regularly screened by laboratory test as well.

    Has guidance been published regarding billing for services rendered as it related to telehealth and COVID-19 testing?

    COVID-19 Testing in the Long-term Care Setting

    When should a Nursing Home perform a facility-wide testing of SARS-CoV-2 for all residents and HCP?

    How do we plan for specimen collection and data management for facility-wide testing of SARS-CoV-2 for all residents and HCP?

    • Health departments and nursing homes should establish who is responsible for performing specimen collection from residents and HCP and a process for specimen collection and transport.
    • Ensure all HCP can be tested, not just those on duty at time of facility-wide testing.
    • Consider whether a nursing home facility’s HCP can collect specimens from both residents and HCP or whether additional support is needed for specimen collection. The facility’s HCP may need to be trained to collect specimens correctly. Training should include IPC requirements and correct PPE use.
    • Determine whether HCP can be tested at the nursing home or whether they will be tested offsite and how results will be shared with the facility and health department.
    • Determine a process that captures which residents and HCP were tested or were unable to be tested.
    • Laboratories that can quickly process large numbers of tests with rapid reporting of results (e.g., within 48 hours) should be selected for facility-wide testing intended to inform infection prevention initiatives to prevent and limit transmission.
      • Ideally, one laboratory should be selected to process specimens from both HCP and residents to facilitate data collection and analysis.

    How do we test in Nursing Home Healthcare Personnel for SARS-CoV-2?

    • At the start of each shift, take the temperature of all HCP and ask about the presence of COVID-19 symptoms;perform viral testing of any HCP who have signs or symptoms of COVID-19.
      • HCP who have fever or symptoms should be excluded from work pending results of the test.
    • Perform initial viral testing of all HCP, along with weekly viral testing thereafter, as part of the recommended reopening process.
      • State and local officials may adjust the recommendation for weekly viral testing of HCP based on the prevalence of the virus in their community.
    • HCP who test positive for SARS-CoV-2 should be excluded from work until they meet return to work criteria.

    How do we test Nursing Home Residents for SARS-CoV-2?

    • Perform initial viral testing of each resident in a nursing home, as part of the recommended reopening process.
    • At least daily, take the temperature of all residents and ask them about presence of COVID-19 symptoms;perform viral testing of any residents who have signs or symptoms of COVID-19.
      • Clinicians should use their judgment to determine if a resident has signs or symptoms consistent with COVID-19 and are encouraged to consider testing for other causes of respiratory illness, such as influenza, in addition to testing for SARS-CoV-2.
      • Facility leadership and local and state health departments should have a plan for performing contact tracing for close contacts of residents with SARS-CoV-2 infection

    How do we perform testing for a SARS-CoV-2 outbreak in a nursing home?

    • INITIAL viral testing:
      • Perform expanded viral testing of all residents and HCP in the nursing home if there is an outbreak in the facility (i.e., a new SARS-CoV-2 infection in any HCP, or any nursing home-onset SARS-CoV-2 infection in a resident).
        • A single new case of SARS-CoV-2 infection in any HCP or a nursing home-onset SARS-CoV-2 infection in a resident should be considered an outbreak. When one case is detected in a nursing home, there are often other residents and HCP who are infected with SARS-CoV-2 who can continue to spread the infection, even if they are asymptomatic. Performing viral testing of all residents and HCP as soon as there is a new confirmed case in the facility will identify infected individuals quickly to assist in their clinical management and allow rapid implementation of IPC interventions (e.g., isolation, cohorting, use of personal protective equipment) to prevent SARS-CoV-2 transmission. When undertaking facility-wide viral testing, facility leadership should expect to identify multiple asymptomatic and pre-symptomatic residents and HCP with SARS-CoV-2 infection and be prepared to cohort residents and mitigate potential staffing shortages. See Public Health Response to COVID-19 in Nursing Homes and Strategies to Mitigate Healthcare Personnel Staffing Shortages for more detail.
    • REPEAT viral testing:
      • After initially performing viral testing of all residents and HCP in response to a new case, CDC recommends repeat testing to ensure there are no new infections among residents and HCP, and that transmission has been terminated.  Repeat testing should be coordinated with the local, territorial, or State health department.
      • Immediately perform viral testing of any resident or HCP who subsequently develops signs or symptoms consistent with COVID-19.
      • Continue repeat viral testing of all previously negative residents, generally between every 3 days to 7 days, until the testing identifies no new cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection among residents or HCP for a period of at least 14 days since the most recent positive result. This follow-up viral testing can assist in the clinical management of infected individuals and in the implementation of infection control interventions to prevent SARS-CoV-2 transmission.
        • If viral test capacity is limited, CDC suggests directing repeat rounds of testing to residents who leave and return to the facility (e.g., for outpatient dialysis) or have known exposure to a case (e.g., roommates of cases or those cared for by a HCP with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection). For large facilities with limited viral test capacity, testing all residents on affected units could be considered, especially if facility-wide repeat viral testing demonstrates no transmission beyond a limited number of units.
      • Continue repeat viral testing of all previously negative HCP, generally between every 3 to 7 days, until the testing identifies no new cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection among residents or HCP for a period of at least 14 days since the most recent positive result.
      • If testing capacity is limited, CDC suggests directing repeat HCP testing to HCP who work at the current facility and also work at other facilities where there are known cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection.

    COVID-19 Testing in the Workplace

    What measures should be implemented for high-density critical infrastructure workplaces?

    • Workers in critical infrastructure sectors may be permitted to work if asymptomatic after potential exposure to a confirmed case of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), provided that worker infection prevention recommendations and controls are implemented.
    • The CDC recommends implementing screening for symptoms of COVID-19, testing, and contact tracing may be used to detect infected workers earlier and exclude them from the workplace, thus preventing disease transmission and subsequent outbreaks.
      • Actively encourage sick employees to stay home
      • Consider conducting daily in-person or virtual health checks
      • Identify where and how workers might be exposed to COVID-19 at work
      • Separate sick employees
      • Take action if an employee is suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19 infection
      • Follow the CDC cleaning and disinfection recommendations
      • Educate employees about steps they can take to protect themselves at work and at home

    Who should be screened for COVID-19 at the workplace?

    • Per the CDC’s “Considerations for use of a testing strategy for COVID-19 infection”:
      • Screening workers and others entering the workplace for symptoms of COVID-19 and body temperature is a critical component of preventing transmission and protecting workers.
      • Workers who are symptomatic upon arrival at work, or who become sick during the day, should immediately be separated from others. They should be sent to their home or a health care facility, as appropriate, and referred for further evaluation and testing in consultation with the state, territorial, or local health departments or through occupational health providers.

    What actions should be taken upon finding a positive case at the workplace?

    • The CDC recommends that when a confirmed case of COVID-19 is identified, interviewing and testing potentially exposed co-workers should occur as soon as possible to reduce the risk of further workplace transmission.
      • Positive test results indicate the need for exclusion from work and isolation at home.
    • A risk-based approach to testing co-workers of a person with confirmed COVID-19 may be applied.
      • Examining facility and operations work records, conducting walk-throughs, and employee interviews may aid in categorizing co-workers into the three tiers of testing priority.
        • Tier 1 is the highest priority for testing of exposed co-workers. Tier 1 workers are those that have close contact with or exposure to a co-worker with confirmed COVID-19 should be tested and quarantined as soon as possible to reduce the risk of further workplace transmission.
        • Tier 2 is the next highest priority tier for testing. Tier 2 includes workers on the same shift, but in a different area of the facility or operation who may have had an exposure to a worker with confirmed COVID-19.
        • Tier 3 includes workers not in Tiers 1 or 2. Tier 3 includes workers who shared a common space (e.g. a rest room, break room) and therefore exposure to worker(s) with confirmed COVID-19 cannot be definitively ruled out. Tier 3 also includes workers who generally work a different shift than the worker(s) with confirmed COVID-19 but exposure cannot be excluded based on the potential for overlap in work time from back-to-back shifts.
    • Implementation of testing strategies can supplement measures to reduce transmission in the workplace, provided other protections are in place to protect worker health while keeping the workplace open.
      • If employers elect to conduct facility-wide testing, multiple asymptomatic workers with SARS-CoV-2 infection may be identified.

    Should workers with recent exposure be permitted to work?

    • Current CDC guidance advises that employers may permit workers who have had an exposure to COVID-19, but who do not have symptoms, to continue to work, provided they adhere to additional safety precautions, such as measuring the employee’s temperature and assessing for symptoms of COVID-19 before each work shift (“pre-screening”), asking the employee to self-monitor for symptoms during their work shift, and asking the employee to wear a cloth face covering while they are in the workplace.

    What day-to-day practices should be implemented in the workplace with suspected or confirmed COVID-19?

    • The following practices should be implemented prior to and during work shifts per CDC guidelines
      • Pre-Screen: Employers should measure the employee’s temperature and assess symptoms prior to them starting work. Ideally, temperature checks should happen before the individual enters the facility.
      • Regular Monitoring: As long as the employee doesn’t have a temperature or symptoms, they should self-monitor under the supervision of their employer’s occupational health program.
      • Wear a Mask: The employee should wear a face mask at all times while in the workplace for 14 days after last exposure. Employers can issue facemasks or can approve employees’ supplied cloth face coverings in the event of shortages.
      • Solid Distance: The employee should maintain 6 feet and practice social distancing as work duties permit in the workplace.
      • Disinfect and Clean work spaces: Clean and disinfect all areas such as offices, bathrooms, common areas, shared electronic equipment routinely.
    • Downstream effects of COVID-19 on your patients

      Downstream effects of COVID-19 on your patients

      Date and Time:

      Length: 30 minutes

    Resources

    1. Patient Portal

      If you are a patient that had COVID-19 testing performed by Aegis Sciences click below to retrieve your results:

      https://Patientportal.aegislabs.com

    2. COVID-19 Testing FAQs

       

      Aegis’ COVID-19 testing FAQ provides information specific to our lab’s testing capabilities.  Additionally, the FAQ document summarizes pertinent information from various resources leading the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

      Clinical FAQ for COVID-19 

    3. Specimen Collection Instructions

      Specimen Collection Instructions

       

      DOWNLOAD SPECIMEN COLLECTION INSTRUCTIONS

    4. Patient Fact Sheet

      Patient Fact Sheet

      This Fact Sheet contains information to help you understand the risks and benefits of using this test for the diagnosis of COVID-19. After reading this Fact Sheet, if you have questions or would like to discuss the information provided, please talk to your healthcare provider. 

      DOWNLOAD PATIENT FACT SHEET - ENGLISH

      DOWNLOAD PATIENT FACT SHEET - SPANISH

       

    5. Provider Fact Sheet

      Provider Fact Sheet

      This Fact Sheet informs you of the significant known and potential risks and benefits of the emergency use of a Molecular Laboratory Developed Test (LDT) COVID-19 Authorized Test (Molecular LDT COVID-19 Authorized Test) that has been issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by FDA. The Molecular LDT COVID-19 Authorized Test is authorized for use on respiratory specimens collected from individuals suspected of COVID-19 by their healthcare provider. 

      DOWNLOAD PROVIDER FACT SHEET