What you need to know now about COVID-19 testing

Testing plays a major role in fighting COVID-19 — for your health and the health of our communities. Getting vaccinated and staying up to date with booster shots is the best way to stay protected. COVID‑19 home antigen tests are another important tool for slowing the spread of the virus. These tests are an easy, no‑cost way to get quick results — usually within 30 minutes.

When to use a COVID‑19 self‑test

Use a COVID‑19 self‑test if you have symptoms; think you’ve been exposed to COVID‑19; or plan to gather indoors with those who may be at risk, including unvaccinated children, seniors, and those who are immunocompromised.

How to get a COVID‑19 self‑test

There are many ways to get a COVID‑19 self‑test at no cost.

  • Federal government — Every home in the U.S. is eligible to order up to 8 free self‑tests without shipping fees at covidtests.gov.
  • Kaiser Permanente website or mobile app — Complete an e‑visit on kp.org/wa or the Kaiser Permanente Washington mobile app to order a self‑test for pickup or delivery to your home.
  • Kaiser Permanente pharmacies — If you’re already planning to visit a Kaiser Permanente location, you can pick up a self‑test while you’re there, as supply allows.
  • Retail pharmacies — Pick up self‑tests from participating retail pharmacies, including Walmart and Bartell Drugs. Just bring the COVID‑19 test to the pharmacy counter and show your photo ID and Kaiser Permanente ID card. Availability of tests may vary. Visit kp.org to see a list of participating retailers near you.

If you pay for a test authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), you can submit a claim for reimbursement. Reimbursement will be limited to $12 per test, including shipping and sales tax.

Check your COVID‑19 self‑test expiration date

The FDA has extended the shelf life of the iHealth brand of COVID‑19 self‑tests. Visit the iHealth website and enter the test’s lot number to see the new expiration date.

What to do if you receive a positive result

If you receive a positive result from a COVID‑19 self‑test, complete an e‑visit right away to report it. It will be added to your medical record, and you’ll receive guidance on treatment, isolation, and quarantine. If you have questions or concerns about your positive result or symptoms, visit kp.org/getcare or use the Kaiser Permanente Washington mobile app to access care.

What should I do if I test negative for COVID-19 but continue to have symptoms?

Continue to treat any symptoms at home and self-isolate until you are fever-free for 24 hours. If your condition worsens, call our 24/7 consulting nurse helpline at 1-800-297-6877.
Visit our COVID-19 testing page for more testing options, FAQs, and updates.

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