COVID-19 pandemic has forced us all into a unique lifestyle. However, things are looking up as Gov. Newsom introduces the resilience roadmap. A huge part of this roadmap is the COVID-19 testing taskforce. This taskforce has been helping Californians connect with testing facilities. 

Lani City Medical is proud to be one of the centers able to offer these tests. However it is important to understand what each test means and if it is the right one for you. 

There are 3 types of tests

1. PCR TEST * 



Let's break these down 


Sample Collection: Nasopharyngeal/Nasal/Sputum 

Turnaround time: 2-5 days 

Cost: Covered by Insurance***. Free of cost State Testing for the Uninsured. 

Who gets tested: Best to diagnose symptomatic patients with Active COVID-19 disease


Sample Collection: Venipuncture Blood Draw 

Turnaround Time: 1-2 days 

Cost: Covered by Insurance***. Lab Sepcific pricing for the Uninsured. 

Who gets tested: Best to evaluate individuals with prior COVID-19 symptoms who could not be tested at the time they were ill. It helps determine whether you built an immune response to COVID-19. 


Sample Collection: Fingerstick Blood 

Turn around time: 10-15 mins 

Cost: Not Covered by Insurance. 

Who gets tested: Same as Serology test above. Important to note, the rapid test is less sensitive and specific than the traditional serology test.  

Now that you know what each means, lets answer some commonly asked questions - 

1. I need to get back to work, but my employer is asking for COVID-19 testing. I do not have any symptoms, how do I get tested? 

COVID-19 can be shed from the nasal mucosa, even if you are asymptomatic. The best test for you will be the PCR test. 

2. My elderly mother is in a nursing facility, should she get tested? 

Yes. PCR test will be the best test for her. 

3. I want to visit my grandmother who has been quarantined in her home. Should I get tested? 

Yes. While it is not a requirement, I would recommend it for the safety of your grandmother. PCR test will the best test for you. 

4. I am scheduled for an elective surgery. Which test should I get? 

The PCR test. 

5. I want to know if I was infected with COVID-19. Can I be tested?

Yes. You can get the Serology or the Rapid Serology test. A positive Serology test will support prior COVID-19 infection. 

6. I want to contribute to community surveillance data. How do I do that? 

A serology test is a great way to help us determine population-level estimates of exposure to SARS-CoV-2 in a community. 

7. I am currently symptomatic. I prefer blood testing to the nasal swab. Am I able to do the Serology test? 

Serology test is NOT able to detect current from past infection. PCR/RNA testing remains the gold standard test for diganosing COVID-19. 

8. I do not have insurance, but would like to get tested. What are my options? 

Under the Baseline program, individuals who meet specific criteria can get tested free of cost. Here is the link to find out more If you do not qualify for this testing, you can call our office for testing as well. We can help you determine whether you qualify for free testing or not through our clinic. 

I hope this article helped you gain a better understanding of the available tests and the common questions around it. If you have nay additional questions or would like to get tested, please call us at 909-727-3911 or visit to schedule an appointment. 

Be safe and Be Kind. 


* FDA approved under EUA 

** Submitted for FDA EUA approval 

*** Please check with your insurance plan for specific coverage questions

Dr. Megha Lalwani

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