Frequently asked questions
What do I need to know before showing up to the testing site?
-Registration before showing up to the site is recommended as that will decrease service time at the site.
- For the safety of our technicians and other patients, make sure you arrive at the drive through site in a car and stay in the car for the entire process.
-Please plan ahead if you are traveling as we cannot guarantee results in 24 hours. However you should receive your results within 48 hours. While our RT-PCR test is generally accepted for international and interstate travel, it is the responsibility of the patient to ensure our test is acceptable for entry to your destination.
How often can I get tested?
You can test as often as is needed. You will need to submit a new registration for each instance of taking a test. As long as each registration qualifies for insurance billing, we will be able to bill your insurance for the cost of the test. When any registration attempt does qualify for insurance billing, you will be prompted to make card payment.
What can I expect at the testing site?
When you arrive at the testing site, a technician will come to the side of your car and verify that your registration is complete. Once that has been verified, you will be entered into our system and handed a test with an ID number that has been tied to your patient registration record.
You will be prompted to pull into a stall to complete your saliva test where a technician will also administer the antigen and antibody test if its covered. The antigen test will be a nasal swab that is then mixed with a special liquid and put onto the testing cartridge for detection. The antibody test will consist of a fingerprick to get a drop of blood on the testing cartridge. Once the testing cartridges have been completed, the test will need to sit for 10 minutes before results can be read.
After you have completed the saliva test, and the antigen and antibody test have run, you can make your way to the checkout point where the tests will be gathered, antigen and antibody results will be read to you (please also take a picture for your own record), and any additional questions can be asked.
How long should I wait after exposure to be tested?
Testing immediately after exposure to a positive case may not indicate that the virus is detected. Studies suggest that testing immediately after exposure may not produce accurate results for you. It has been advised to wait 4-5 days after exposure to test so that if there was transmission and infection, the viral load would be built up enough to be accurately detected. If you know you have been exposed to a positive case, it has been recommended to self-quarantine until you have received test results.
How and when will I get my test results?
For the antibody test, you will receive results before you leave the testing site. It is recommended to take a picture of the results for your own record as there is no official lab report produced for the antibody test.
The antigen test will be similar to the antibody test, except there is an official lab report that is produced upon request for one.
Is there a lab report for the antibody test?
We offer the antibody test in conjunction with the saliva RT-PCR test. There is not a written report for the antibody test because the antibody test in and of itself does not provide sufficient evidence for any kind of diagnosis or immunity. To our knowledge, it may indicate if you have had the virus within the past 4-6 weeks. You will receive results right away and should take a picture of the result for your own record. It is not diagnostic but in combination with the saliva RT-PCR test, it can help give a broader picture of your exposure to the virus and where you may be in the viral cycle.
Organizations should not be using the antibody test as diagnostic or use it as evidence of immunity according to the FDA and CDC:
Who will have access to my test results?
We are only allowed to send test results to the email entered on the patient registration form. However, we are required to report all test results to the state health department.
International travel questions?
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Locations and hours of operations?
Please visit our locations page for more details.
How do I contact you?
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About the tests
What tests do you offer?
We offer the RT-PCR saliva-based COVID-19 diagnostic test, the COVID-19 rapid antigen test, and the COVID-19 rapid antibody test.
What is the saliva-based COVID-19 RT-PCR test?
Premier Diagnostics uses the saliva-based RT-PCR test to detect the COVID-19 virus. RT-PCR stands for reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. To take this test, patients are required to excrete saliva into a sterile test tube provided to them at the testing site. The saliva samples are then collected and transported to a processing lab. There, the samples undergo a RNA amplification process called polymerase chain reaction. Finally, the RT-PCR process amplifies the possibly infected DNA to allow detection of the COVID-19 virus.
The saliva-based RT-PCR test is 98.9% accurate and has received EUA approval from the FDA.
What is the COVID-19 antibody test?
Your body produces antibodies to fight infectious diseases such as COVID-19. These antibodies will remain in your bloodstream for some time if you have previously contracted or been exposed to an active COVID-19 case. Research on COVID-19 antibody behavior is still under development, but most medical professionals believe these antibodies may remain in your bloodstream for up 4-6 weeks after exposure.
The COVID-19 antibody test uses blood to detect the presence of antibodies associated with the COVID-19 virus. Although antibodies do not give a person full immunity from the virus, the detection of antibodies can provide a useful clue into the spread of the disease and a reasonable explanation for past symptoms.
Are these tests FDA approved?
Yes, the COVID-19 tests administered by Premier Diagnostics are EUA/FDA approved.
Are the tests performed in a CLIA certified lab?
Yes, we are partnered with SDTL for the processing of our tests. SDTL is a CLIA accredited laboratory. The test performed by SDTL is an RT-PCR test and meets guidelines for most interstate and international travel, but please refer to the guidelines specified for entry to your destination.
Why should I get tested?
Knowing whether or not you are currently infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 can help you to know what steps you should take for yourself and in order to protect others.
What is the difference between the RT-PCR diagnostic test and the rapid diagnostic test?
There are two main different types of COVID-19 diagnostic tests - molecular tests and antigen tests.
Molecular tests, i.e. RT-PCR tests, detect the genetic material present inside a virus particle. The FDA has authorized molecular tests for use in a clinical laboratory setting. Most molecular tests are polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests. In PCR testing, a machine located in a laboratory runs a series of reactions. These reactions first convert the virus’s ribonucleic acid (RNA), if present, into deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and then amplify it (make millions of copies of the DNA); the test then detects this DNA. By running multiple amplification cycles, a PCR test can sense even low levels of viral genetic material in a patient’s sample, so these tests tend to be highly sensitive (especially laboratory PCR tests).
Antigen tests, often referred to as rapid tests, detect one or more specific proteins from a virus particle. All currently-authorized antigen tests are POC tests and provide results in less than an hour. Our test will produce a diagnosis in about 10 minutes.
What is the COVID-19 rapid antigen test?
Premier Diagnostics offers a rapid antigen test to detect specific proteins from the SARS-CoV-2 virus. To take the test, a sample is collected from your nose using a specialized swab. The technician will then mix a special liquid with the swab to extract the genetic material of any virus that may be on the swab. The liquid is then placed on the testing cassette that will indicate if antigens from the virus are detected. The test will take about 10 minutes to run.
While antigen testing is not as accurate as RT-PCR testing, the speed and convenience allows many patients to get a needed diagnosis while waiting on the lab results from their RT-PCR test.
Pricing and Billing
What is the cost of your tests with and without insurance?
You might receive an explanation of benefits (EOB) from your insurance company which shows a balance due. Please know that Premier Diagnostics will not charge you for any amount outstanding after your insurance company reimbursement. Please disregard any communication from your insurance company which states that you have a patient responsibility to pay Premier Diagnostics. We will not attempt to collect this money from you.If you do not have insurance but qualify for insurance billing, we can submit to the federal government to cover the cost of the test.
However if you do not qualify for insurance billing, the cost of the RT-PCR test is $125, the rapid antigen test is $100, and the cost of the antibody test is $50.
I have received a bill, I thought the test was fully covered by insurance?
Please send the check to:
Include all the paperwork that came with the check and we can make sure the payment is tied to the right test.
How do I get a refund?
If you paid with your card and were charged multiple times, please email email@example.com and we will be happy to refund any duplicate charges that have happened. Though its rare, some patients are charged multiple times if the payment button is clicked more than once while the page is loading.
What type of payment is accepted?
We only accept payment through the online registration form. No card readers are located on site. No cash registers either, which means we are a cash-less/check-less business.
What information do I need to register?
Are all the questions required?
Is my information safe and protected?
Yes, Premier Diagnostics is HIPAA compliant and we will ensure that personal health information stays secure by employing modern security best practices and standards.
Do I receive a confirmation number?
Yes you will receive a confirmation number once your registration is complete. This number will be tied to your patient record in our system.