COVID Testing for Salt Lake City Residents
Advanced Testing Services offers two sites in Utah at which you can get a COVID PCR test, COVID rapid test or COVID antibody test. Whether your job requires you to get frequent testing, you feel sick or you have been exposed to COVID, Advanced Testing Services is the place to come.
Who Should Get a COVID Test?
Definitely if you are having symptoms, you should get COVID-19 testing. Symptoms include:
Loss of sense of smell
You should also get COVID testing if you were exposed to someone who had COVID. Some people are required to get regular COVID testing to attend work or school. Others get COVID testing before or after traveling (or both) to ensure they are not picking up or spreading the virus to or from different locations.
It’s important to get tested if you feel sick or you have been exposed in order to avoid exposing others to the virus. You should avoid going out while you wait for test results to come back, and if they are positive, the Utah Department of Health will contact you with instructions regarding how long you are required to quarantine.
How to Get Covid Testing if You Live in Salt Lake City
Our COVID testing center provides drive-up COVID testing for Salt Lake City-area residents for patient safety. Our tented testing center is set up in the parking lot outside of our facility, and patients can simply drive up, put the car window down and get their test. We believe this is the best way to offer COVID testing, since it protects the staff and other patients inside the building in the event your results are positive. Further, it protects you from any illnesses you might pick up from entering the building.
Appointments are not necessary, but your testing will be faster if you preregister and fill out the paperwork online ahead of time. Then when you arrive, you’ll just have to show your ID and tell us which type of COVID test you want to get.
COVID PCR Tests & COVID Rapid Tests
Many patients opt for the COVID PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test. This test is performed by inserting a swab into your nasal cavity to retrieve a mucus sample. This sample is then sent to the laboratory, and you are given a requisition number to check your results online. Results are usually available within 48 to 72 hours.
If you need test results faster, you can get a rapid COVID test, which is also done by nasal swab. The results of rapid COVID testing are available in about 20 minutes. Rapid antigen tests are not as accurate as COVID PCR tests, the nasopharyngeal swab method offers 93.75% accuracy but have more false negatives than false positives. Thus, if you get a positive result from your rapid COVID test, the odds are that it is correct and you should stay home until it is safe for you to go out again. However, if you get a negative result, you may want to get a COVID PCR test to confirm the results.
COVID Antibody Tests in the Salt Lake City Area
If you think you previously had COVID-19, you may opt to get a COVID antibody test. This is a finger-prick test, and results are available in about 20 minutes. A positive result on this test can mean that you have had COVID-19 at some point; however, you can also get a positive result on some types of COVID antibody tests if you have been vaccinated.
Authorities warn that having had COVID does not grant you full immunity to the virus. Although rare, you can get COVID-19 a second time. And you are also vulnerable to any variants, such as delta and mu.
Like a common cold or flu, you can have the illness and be immune to that strain, but the more strains there are, the greater the chances that you will become sick with a different strain.
The best way to protect yourself against COVID-19 is to get the vaccination. It is free and widely available. The vaccination will protect you against COVID-19 and the variants, although it doesn’t offer 100% immunity. However, if you contract COVID or one of the variants after having been vaccinated, your symptoms will be much less severe.
COVID-19 Stats for Salt Lake City
According to the Salt Lake County Health Department, the county has seen more than 180,000 confirmed COVID cases since the pandemic began — about 1.5% of the population. Of these cases, 3,243 people were hospitalized and 1,079 died. Of those who contracted the virus, almost 90% were unvaccinated.
More than 660,000 Salt Lake County residents are fully vaccinated, a little more than half the population. Salt Lake City had the most COVID cases of any in Salt Lake County — more than 26,000, about 14% of the population. The age group with the largest number of cases was 18-29 years old, followed by 30-39 and 40-49. The smallest group was over 80. Most cases were contracted at work, specifically the manufacturing, transportation, construction, food service and retail industries.
Confirmed cases of COVID were low over the summer, but shot back up in September and October.
Utah Gov. Spencer Cox (R) said he believes masks are not effective in fighting COVID and thus does not require Utahns to wear them. However, businesses are allowed to require patrons to wear a mask to enter if they so desire.
Almost 700,000 U.S. residents have died of COVID, many young and otherwise healthy. Many of those who contracted COVID and survived have gone on to suffer a host of symptoms for many months, known as “long COVID.” Some people are permanently disabled.
Do your best to remain free of this virus, and to keep from spreading it in Utah and elsewhere. Get COVID-19 testing at Advanced Testing Services today, and whenever you need a test.