COVID-19 Testing

US Specialty Labs is a CLIA and CAP accredited high-complexity reference lab located in San Diego.  In addition to a full menu of wellness, fertility and general health tests, we now offer EUA authorized COVID-19 tests as a way to help support our communities’ safety and ability to return to work, school and travel.

There are two different categories of tests available – diagnostic tests and antibody tests.

A diagnostic test can show if you have an active coronavirus infection and should take steps to quarantine or isolate yourself from others. Currently there are two types of diagnostic tests – molecular (RT-PCR) tests that detect the virus’s genetic material, and antigen tests that detect specific proteins on the surface of the virus.

An antibody test looks for antibodies that are made by the immune system in response to a threat, such as a specific virus. Antibodies can help fight infections. Antibodies can take several days or weeks to develop after you have an infection and may stay in your blood for several weeks after recovery. Because of this, antibody tests should not be used to diagnose an active coronavirus infection. At this time researchers do not know if the presence of antibodies means that you are immune to the coronavirus in the future.

 

*Please Note: We no longer test children under the age of 5.

Appointments are required to protect your safety and the safety of our employees.  They are available Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:00 AM and 4:00 PM and Saturdays between 7am and 12pm.
When you register, you must fill out a registration form and you may be asked to prepay before arriving.  Check with your insurance company regarding their policy for reimbursement.

Note: First responders only need to call and let us know you will be coming in. We have a designated area for you to park to minimize your wait time.

Testing for Travel

If you have been advised, or think you may need to show proof of your health status prior to traveling or upon arrival, pending further updates, the only test method that is being accepted is rtPCR.  The requirements vary by State and Country, but most require a report showing a negative result from a sample collected 72 hours prior to departure. 

CHECK THE CURRENT REQUIREMENTS FOR YOUR DESTINATION PRIOR TO BOOKING ANY TESTS.

Note: Unfortunately, we are not as yet listed by the State of Hawaii as a Trusted Testing Partner.

For those states and countries that require additional documentation, we offer a 24-hour turnaround travel test package that includes a signed and embossed report along with a signed and embossed letter certifying the results, the type of test used, the results and the passport number for the individual traveler.  Additionally, we provide copies of our laboratory licenses and accreditation certificates.

In most cases, this additional documentation (and associated cost) is not required for travel within the United States.  Please double check the requirements for your destination, as requirements do change. 

The day after your test you may contact the lab and arrange a time to pick up your information.

For those traveling overseas, we recommend reviewing the information below prior to departure.

CDCs COVID-19 Travel Recommendations s By Country

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/map-and-travel-notices.html

CDCs overview of Travel During the COVID-19 Pandemic

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/travel-during-covid19.html

Tests We Offer

SARS-COV-2 Antibody Testing

An antibody test looks for antibodies that are made by the immune system in response to a threat, such as a specific virus. Antibodies can help fight infections. Antibodies can take several days or weeks to develop after you have an infection and may stay in your blood for several weeks after recovery. Because of this, antibody tests should not be used to diagnose an active coronavirus infection. At this time researchers do not know if the presence of antibodies means that you are immune to the coronavirus in the future.

SARS-COV-2 Antigen Testing

The SARS-COV-2 Antigen test is a diagnostic test that can show if you have an active coronavirus infection and should take steps to quarantine or isolate yourself from others. Currently there are two types of diagnostic tests – molecular (RT-PCR) tests that detect the virus’s genetic material, and antigen tests that detect specific proteins on the surface of the virus.

SARS-COV-2 RT-PCR Testing

The SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR test is a real-time diagnostic test based on the reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RTPCR) for the qualitative detection of nucleic acid from SARS-CoV-2 in samples of the upper respiratory tract (oropharyngeal swabs) collected from individuals suspected by their healthcare provider to have COVID-19, belonging to a risk cohort, or having been in contact with a confirmed COVID-19 patient.

Our rtPCR test utilizes the EUA authorized test kits from Quidel.  Recipient  information can be found here.

Our Antigen test utilizes the EUA authorized test from Quidel.  Recipient information can be found here.

Our Antibody testing utilizes either the EUA authorized EUA RightSign or Abbott tests.  Recipient information for the RightSign IgG /IgM test can be found here.

Recipient information for the Abbott IgG test can be found here.

Results will be available in 24 to 48 hours.

Don’t hesitate to call (858) 209-2300 if you have any questions.

Note: The information in the chart was originally published by the FDA and is being re-purposed to help our clients and make informed decisions regarding testing.

How to Book COVID-19 Test Appointment

How to access your patient portal to view your results

General Questions

Currently rtPCR is what we understand to be the only type of test accepted.  In most cases there is a 72 hour window for the testing to have taken place, but some countries are now requiring as short as 48 hours….sometimes measured prior to departure, sometimes measured prior to upon arrival local time.  Check with the destination state or country as regulations and requirements change. 

We are not currently set up to bill insurance, but we can provide a detailed bill that can be submitted to an insurance company for reimbursement.

Yes we do drive-up testing. Patients will need to sit and wait in their cars to get tested.

Your test results will be available in the Patient Portal between 24 and 48 hours.  Results for Rush Orders will be returned inside of 24 hours.  If they are not, you will be refunded the rush charge.

Your test results will be available in the patient portal.  Patients that test positive will be contacted by phone

We will contact you and report the result per the State of California guidelines.  Additionally, if you test positive for COVID-19, we urge you to do the following:

  • Contact your personal physician to determine what is best for you
  • Consider reaching out to the San Diego Blood Bank about becoming a convalescent plasma donor
  • Consider participating in one of the studies being conducted by US Specialty Labs that include free testing and compensation.

No, we are required by law to follow-up with a patient if they were to test positive. In order to do so, that would require contact information.