Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1How much will I be charged for a Covid-19 test at your clinic?
Our tests are No-Cost with insurance.
2What Covid-19 testing do you offer?
A Rapid Antigen test is provided for those patients currently experiencing symptoms of illness. An RT-RNA PCR test is provided for those who may have been exposed but show no signs of illness. Both tests can be administered if needed.
3How long does it take to get the Rapid Test result?
The Rapid Test result is delivered while you wait, within 10-20 minutes. You will be given your result verbally by our staff and leave with a Rapid Result Card verifying your test results.
4How long does it take to get the PCR test result?
The PCR test result takes approximately 48-72 hours to receive. Your results will be sent to you directly from our laboratory partner, via the e-mail address you provided upon registration.
5Which test do I need?
Please contact your employer, travel destination, event holder, or the entity requiring your test for details of which test they require.
6What are the symptoms of an active COVID-19 infection?
COVID-19 symptoms include
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
- Blue lips or face
7Which test do I need to cross the Canadian Border?
As regulations are always changing, if you are unsure of which test is required, please contact the Canada Border Services Agency directly at 1-800-461-9999 to ensure you have the latest information or refer to their website: https://cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/menu-eng.html
8Where is your testing clinic located and what are your hours of operation?
Please see our Locations page for the address and hours of the clinic closest to you.
9Do you provide Covid Testing for events and/or at remote sites?
Yes. If you are interested in having us come to your event or site, please contact us at: 716-320-8944 or 716-214-0498.
10Do you require patients to wear masks while at the testing clinic?
Yes. To ensure safety, all staff, patients and guests MUST wear a mask on site. There are NO EXCEPTIONS allowed.
11Do I need an appointment to get tested at any of the CTS sites?
No. We accept walk-ins at our testing sites and do not require appointments for testing. For the safest and fastest testing experience, however, we encourage you to preregister and preschedule your test.
12How accurate are your Rapid and PCR tests?
According to the CDC, neither test is always 100% accurate however, of the two, the PCR test is considered the most accurate test available with a very low outcome of either false positive or false negative results. Rapid Test sensitivity varies depending on the time since exposure and the course of one’s infection but is considered to have “moderate to high” sensitivity during peak viral load. Compared to PCR tests, Rapid or Antigen tests are more likely to generate false negative results, especially when performed on people who don’t have symptoms. To offset decreased sensitivity, the FDA recommends doing serial testing—or taking multiple tests. Testing over several days improves the chance of catching asymptomatic infections.
13How does the test work?
Tests are conducted painlessly via nasal swab, though you may feel some discomfort. Antigen tests search for pieces of protein from the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The sample you provide is treated with a reagent and analyzed on the spot by a health care professional. Unlike molecular tests, these require a higher level of virus in the test sample before the test will turn positive. This means that an antigen test may sometimes lead to a false negative. The PCR test looks for genetic material from the virus using sophisticated chemicals and equipment to reproduce millions to billions of copies of viral-related DNA from even the smallest sample. Because of that, the test is considered highly sensitive, leading to very few false negatives.
14How often can I visit your site for testing?
There is no limit to the number of times an individual can be safely tested. Please visit us as frequently as is needed. We look forward to seeing you.
15What is the age requirement to be tested?
We provide testing for all ages. Anyone under the age of 18 is required to be accompanied by a parent or guardian holding a valid driver’s license, non driver ID, or passport. All patients are required to have one of these forms of ID to be tested.
16Who should get tested for current COVID-19 infection?
- People who have symptoms of COVID-19. The CDC recommends that anyone with any signs or symptoms of COVID-19 get tested, regardless of vaccination status or prior infection.
- Most people who have had close contact (within 6 feet for a total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period) with someone with confirmed COVID-19. Fully vaccinated people should be tested 3-5 days following a known exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 and wear a mask in public indoor settings for 14 days or until they receive a negative test result. People who have tested positive for COVID-19 within the past 3 months and recovered do not need to get tested following an exposure as long as they do not develop new symptoms.
- Unvaccinated people who have taken part in activities that put them at higher risk for COVID-19 because they cannot physically distance as needed to avoid exposure. These are activities such as travel, attending large social or mass gatherings, or being in crowded or poorly-ventilated indoor settings.
- People who have been asked or referred to get tested by their healthcare provider, or state, tribal, or local health department.
17If I receive a positive result on-site from my Rapid Test what should I do next?
You may consider retesting using the PCR test to verify the results. We advise all of our patients to immediately contact their primary physician or the Erie County Health Department for the current Covid-19 guidelines. Keep yourself and others safe!
18When should I get tested?
When in doubt, be safe and get tested. Vaccinated, unvaccinated, symptoms or no symptoms, patients test positive EVERY DAY. Remember our tests are 100% free. Testing helps keep yourself and others safe and stop the spread of Covid-19. See question 19 for more details.
19Are your tests FDA Approved?
Yes. Our testing is FDA Emergency Use Authorized.
20Do you test for the Delta and other variants?
Yes. Delta, Mu, UK, South African, Brazil, California and other variants are all recognized by our tests.
21Will any of the tests tell me which variant I have?
None of the COVID-19 tests you take, either at home, at our clinics, or elsewhere, will tell you if you have a variant such as Delta. Detecting variants requires detailed and expensive genetic testing that we do not offer.
22How is COVID-19 illness spread?
COVID-19 spreads when an infected person breathes out droplets and very small particles that contain the virus. These droplets and particles can be breathed in by other people or land on their eyes, noses, or mouth. In some circumstances, they may contaminate surfaces they touch. People who are closer than 6 feet from the infected person are most likely to get infected. COVID-19 is spread in three main ways: Breathing in air when close to an infected person who is exhaling small droplets and particles that contain the virus. Having these small droplets and particles that contain virus land on the eyes, nose, or mouth, especially through splashes and sprays like a cough or sneeze. Touching eyes, nose, or mouth with hands that have the virus on them.
23If I test positive for COVID-19, when should I seek emergency care?
Look for the emergency warning signs* of 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
- Inability to wake or stay awake
- Pale, gray, or blue-colored skin, lips, or nail beds, depending on skin tone
24Where can I find complete information on COVID-19 testing, symptoms, and disease?
For detailed, thorough answers to any COVID-19-related questions, visit the CDC website