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COVID-19 Testing

Florida Department of Health - St. Johns County

  •  904-506-6081
  •  

    Mailing Address

    200 San Sebastian View 

     

    Saint Augustine, Florida 32084 

Testing Sites

Find a COVID-19 Testing Site Near You
View COVID-19 Testing Locations

IF YOU NEED URGENT MEDICAL ATTENTION, CALL 9-1-1

  • Test Types
  • What do I do if I think I was exposed to COVID-19?
  • What to do if you have been exposed to COVID-19
  • I Tested Positive for COVID-19, Now What?
  • Contact Tracing for COVID-19
  • Additional Information
Printable Version

COVID-19 Test Types

Molecular Test

For Diagnosing Active Infection

Also known as:

Diagnostic test, viral test, molecular test, nucleic acid amplification tests (NAAT), PT-PCR tests

How the sample is taken:

Nasal or throat swab (most tests) Saliva (a few tests)

How long it takes to get results:

Same day (some locations) or up to a week, depending on the laboratory

Is another test needed?

This test is typically highly accurate and usually does not need to be repeated.

What it shows:

Active coronavirus infection

What it can do:

Diagnose active coronavirus infection at the time of the test or shows that you do not have COVID-19.


Antigen Test

For Diagnosing Active Infection

Also known as:

Rapid diagnostic test

How the sample is taken:

Nasal or throat swab (for use in symptomatic individuals only)

How long it takes to get results:

One hour or less

Is another test needed?

Positive results are usually highly accurate, but negative results may need to be confirmed with a molecular test.

What it shows:

Active coronavirus infection

What it can do:

Diagnose active coronavirus infection at the time of the test or show that you do not have COVID-19. Your health care provider may order a molecular test if your antigen test shows a negative result, but you have symptoms of COVID-19.


Antibody Test

Not for Diagnosis

Also known as:

Serological test, serology, blood test, serology test

How the sample is taken:

Finger stick or blood draw

How long it takes to get results:

Same day (many locations) or 1–3 days

Is another test needed?

Sometimes a second antibody test is needed for accurate results.

What it shows:

Whether you have been infected by coronavirus in the past and developed antibodies.

What it can do:

Show if you have had COVID-19 or were infected with coronavirus in the past


COVID-19 rapid tests are inexpensive and fast but sometimes give incorrect results* People with symptoms and a negative rapid test should: Get a confirmation (RT-PCR) test, Wear a mask, Stay home in a separate room.

Florida Health Office of Communications
PDF 08-07-20

Some people are at higher risk of getting very sick from COVID-19. Here’s what to do if you think you may have been exposed to coronavirus.

Watch for symptoms

People with COVID-19 have reported a wide range of symptoms — ranging from mild to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus.

Use the CDC’s self-checker to help make decisions and seek appropriate medical care regarding COVID-19.

People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:

  • Fever or Chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

This list is not all inclusive. Talk to your healthcare provider about any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you.

When to seek emergency medical attention:

Look for emergency warning signs* for COVID-19. If someone is showing any of these signs, seek emergency medical care immediately:
  • Trouble breathing
  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
  • New confusion
  • I nability to wake or stay awake
  • Pale, gray, blue-colored skin, lips or nail beds,
    depending on skin tone.
*This list is not all possible symptoms. Please call your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you.
Call 911 or call ahead to your local emergency facility: Notify the operator that you are seeking care for someone who has or may have COVID-19.

Children & Teens can get COVID-19.

While fewer children have been sick with COVID-19 compared to adults, children can be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, can get sick from COVID-19, and can spread the virus that causes COVID-19 to others. Children, like adults, who have COVID-19 but have no symptoms (“asymptomatic”) can still spread the virus to others.

Most children with COVID-19 have mild symptoms or have no symptoms at all. However, some children can get severely ill from COVID-19.

Get tested

If you are concerned about your status, get tested for COVID-19 right away. Even if you don’t have symptoms, you can get tested.

See more information about symptoms and testing for COVID-19 and what to do if you were exposed to coronavirus.


Last updated: 4/20/2021
Content Source: CDC.GovFloridaHealthCovid-19.gov

COVID-19

What to do if
you've been exposed.

Stay home for 14 days.

  • Monitor for symptoms: fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea. If you are symptomatic, are they better or worse? If you are asymptomatic, have you developed symptoms?
  • Check your temperature twice daily.
  • If you develop symptoms or your symptoms become worse, call your doctor or health care provider—or 911 if it’s an emergency.

Avoid contact with people at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.


The CDC has new options to reduce quarantine.


How do you know you have been exposed?

COVID-19 spreads through the respiratory droplets of an infected person—who may or may not look sick—when they cough, sneeze or talk. You have exposed yourself to COVID-19 if:

  • You have been within 6 feet of an infected person for a period of about 15
    minutes—with or without face masks.
  • You live in the same household as a person with COVID-19.
  • You are caring for a person with COVID-19.

Protect your household.

Stay away from other people and in a separate room. Use a separate bathroom that only you can use.

Everyone in the home should:

  • Cover coughs and sneezes with insides of elbows or tissues—throw tissues away.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water or use hand sanitizers that are at least 60% alcohol-based.
  • Clean and disinfect all “high-touch” surfaces—door knobs, counters, refrigerator handles—every day.
  • Avoid touching faces with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid sharing personal things and household items.
  • Wear a cloth mask if unable to practice social distancing.


I Tested Positive for COVID-19
Now What?

Stay home.

  • Stay in one room away from others in your household, including pets.
  • Have sole use of a bathroom.
  • Wear a cloth face covering.
  • Don’t share personal household items like cups, utensils and towels.
  • The CDC has information about When to Quarantine

At-home care.

  • Keep track of any symptoms and check your temperature twice daily.
  • Watch for common symptoms: fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, and diarrhea.
  • Be alert for severe symptoms: trouble breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, confusion, inability to wake or stay awake, or bluish lips or face.
  • Call your doctor or health care provider if your symptoms get worse.
  • Ask your doctor or health care about pain and fever medication.
  • Get rest and stay hydrated.
  • View the at-home care guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Public health staff will ask you about close contacts.

Over a number of days, staff will monitor you and your contacts. This is called contact tracing and it’s a core public health function that helps stop the spread of disease.

Timeline for stopping self-isolation:

You tested positive with symptoms:

  • At least 10 days have passed since your symptoms first appeared.
  • At least 24 hours have passed since you have had a fever without using fever-reducing medications, and other symptoms have improved.

You tested positive without symptoms:

  • At least 10 days have passed since the day you were tested, and you have no symptoms.

The CDC has new options to reduce quarantine.

Printable Version

Contact Tracing for COVID-19

Answer the Call from
the Health Department

The Florida Department of Health in St. Johns County is working hard to slow the spread of COVID-19. If you have been around someone with COVID-19, someone from the health department may call you. Self-quarantine at home and follow our instructions. Making a choice to help us in the fight against COVID-19 helps protect you, your family, and your community. Help us slow transmission and answer the call to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Why? Case investigation and contact tracing, a core disease control measure employed by state health department personnel for decades, is a key strategy for preventing further spread of COVID-19. Immediate action is needed. Communities must scale up and train a large workforce and work collaboratively across public and private agencies to stop the transmission of COVID-19.


(Video Length 1:01)


If you test positive for COVID-19, public health staff will ask you about your close contacts. Over a number of days, staff will monitor you and your contacts. This is called contact tracing and it’s a core public health function that helps stop the spread of disease.

  • Public health staff will help you identify the time frame when you may have been infectious.

  • Staff will help you recall your close contacts during that time and will notify contacts of their potential exposure.

  • Your identity will not be revealed.

You tested positive:

You will be asked to self-isolate at home.

  • Stay in one room away from others in your household, including pets. Have sole use of a bathroom.
  • Ask your doctor about pain and fever medication. Get rest and stay hydrated.
  • Keep track of your symptoms and check your temperature twice daily.

The CDC has new options to reduce quarantine.

For contacts with symptoms:

They will be asked to self-isolate for 10 days.

  • They may be referred to testing.
  • They will advised to stay in one room away from others in their household, including pets, and have sole use of a bathroom.
  • They will be advised to wear a face mask and keep a social distance of at least 6 feet if they need to be around other people or pets within the home.
  • They will be asked to keep track of their symptoms.
  • They may be asked about their close contacts.

For contacts with no symptoms:

Because some people with COVID-19 have no apparent symptoms, this person will be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days.

  • They may be referred to testing.
  • They will be advised to wear a face mask and keep a social distance of at least 6 feet if they need to be around other people or pets within the home.
  • They will be asked to watch for COVID-19 symptoms.

For a contact that is missed:

This person could have COVID-19.

  • If they have symptoms, they may choose to be tested.
  • If they don’t have symptoms, they may never choose to be tested.

That’s why everyone should:

  • Practice hand and face hygiene.
  • Wear a face mask and social distance for at least 6 feet when in public.
  • Avoid closed spaces with poor ventilation, crowded places and close-contact situations like talking in close range—the Three Cs.

It's important that you speak with a contact tracer if you have had potential exposure to COVID-19.


The Florida Department of Health in St. Johns County urges residents to answer calls from:

(904) 506-6081
(833) 917-2880
(833) 443-5364
(850) 583-2419

If symptoms worsen or become severe, you should seek medical or emergency care.

COVID-19 Symptoms: fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, and diarrhea.

When to seek emergency medical attention:

Emergency Warning Signs* - Seek Emergency Medical Care immediately: trouble breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, New confusion, inability to wake or stay awake, or Pale, gray, blue-colored skin, lips or nail beds, depending on skin tone.
*This list is not all possible symptoms. Please call your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you.
Call 911 or call ahead to your local emergency facility: Notify the operator that you are seeking care for someone who has or may have COVID-19.

At-Home Care Guidance: CDC.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/.


Florida Health Office of Communications
PDF 12-10-20