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COVID-19 (coronavirus) Update. Stay informed with the latest information.

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Testing FAQs

This information was developed by the Florida Department of Health in Volusia County, in conjunction with Volusia County's hospital systems. This is an evolving situation so information being provided now may change. Check back for the most up-to-date information:

Q: Who is testing for COVID-19?
A: Primary care physicians and urgent care centers may test people with symptoms to determine if they have COVID-19. If you are sick and exhibiting symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath), stay home and contact your primary care physician or urgent care. Physicians are stringently adhering to the testing criteria set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to determine if a patient qualifies for a COVID-19 test. A doctor will likely test you for other illnesses, such as the flu, before ordering a COVID-19 test.

Q: What do I do if my doctor won’t test me?
A:

  1. Physicians are stringently adhering to the testing criteria set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to determine if a patient qualifies for a COVID-19 test.  If your provider tells you that you do meet criteria and refuses to test you or does not have the capability to perform a test, it is the doctor’s responsibility to make the arrangements for testing through another provider. 
  2. If your doctor does not make arrangements for testing and you still have concerns and symptoms consistent with COVID-19, call an urgent care center. Not all urgent care centers are assisting with testing. However, several urgent care providers in Volusia County are testing people who have symptoms and meet criteria for testing.
  3. The health department is following very strict testing guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. If you meet those strict criteria, your doctor should contact the health department to discuss your care.  
  4. Unless you are experiencing severe respiratory distress, such as shortness of breath or chest pain, you should not go to an ER for a COVID-19 test. The emergency department should be used only by those having a medical emergency, such as chest pain or shortness of breath.
  5. Please remember: Not everyone needs to be tested for COVID-19. Most people have mild illness and are able to recover at home.

Q: Should I go to the ER if I think I need a COVID-19 test?
A: 
Unless you are experiencing severe respiratory distress, such as shortness of breath or chest pain, you should not go to an ER for a COVID-19 test. Physicians can take a collection sample from those patients who meet the testing criteria as set by CDC. The emergency department should be used only by those having a medical emergency, such as chest pain or shortness of breath.

Q: What should I do if I think I might have COVID-19?
A: If you have travelled internationally or been on a cruise, you should self-quarantine for 14 days immediately upon returning from your travels, even if you aren’t experiencing symptoms. If you develop a fever, cough or shortness of breath during those 14 days, contact your physician and disclose your travel history. Your physician will advise you of next steps. If you are experiencing chest pain or shortness of breath, go to the ER.

Q: Can I get a coronavirus test at the hospital if I am not sick?
A: 
No. If you’re not sick, it’s unlikely that you have COVID-19. Currently all tests are designated for those who are exhibiting symptoms and meet the testing criteria set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Q: I have a fever and cough. Will I be automatically tested for COVID-19?
A: 
No. Fever and cough are common symptoms for other illnesses, including the flu. Physicians will evaluate your symptoms, travel history, potential for exposure and other factors and determine if a test is appropriate. They will also test you for other viruses, including the flu.

Q: Where can I be tested?
A: 
A physician must order a COVID-19 test. If a doctor deems it appropriate to test you for COVID-19, the sample would be collected in the physician’s office. The test itself is conducted through a lab. (This lab is not the same as the consumer-facing labs where patients go for outpatient bloodwork.)

Q: Are the results instantaneous?
A: 
No. Unlike a flu test, which can be administered on-site with quick results, the COVID-19 test takes up to seven days from the time of collection sample to results being shared with the patient. During that time, patients will be instructed to follow CDC guidelines and isolate themselves.

Q: When would I get results from a test?
A: 
Up to seven days after administration of the test.

Q: Do doctors and hospitals share results with the Florida Department of Health?
A: 
Yes. They are required by law share positive COVID-19 test results with the Florida Department of Health.

Q: Is drive-through testing available in Volusia County?
A: 
Currently, there are no plans for drive-through testing in Volusia County, but if drive-through sites become available they will be announced.

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