what you need to know
Who Should Get Tested
Testing is currently recommended for all individuals with new symptoms compatible with COVID-19, however mild. COVID-19 symptoms are similar to those of the common cold and other respiratory infections. The most common symptoms of COVID-19 include:
- Fever, Chills, Cough (or exacerbation of chronic cough), Shortness of breath, Sore throat, Loss of sense of smell or taste, Loss of appetite, Headache, Muscle aches, Fatigue, Runny nose, Nausea and vomiting, Diarrhea
Less common symptoms of COVID-19 infection include:
- Stuffy nose, Conjunctivitis (Pink eye), Dizziness, Confusion, Abdominal pain, Skin rashes or discoloration of fingers or toes.
Who Doesn’t Need to be Tested
Individuals without symptoms compatible with COVID-19 are not recommended for testing unless they have been referred by a physician or nurse practitioner or are part of a Public Health Investigation.
Frequently Asked Eligibility Questions
- I don’t have symptoms, but I’ve had contact (e.g. bar, restaurant, party, etc.) with a confirmed COVID-19 case, can I be tested?
Due to limited testing capacity, tests are currently limited to symptomatic individuals. However, if you’ve had any COVID-19 symptoms in the last 14 days, you are eligible for testing.
- I don’t have symptoms, but I’ve had close contact (e.g. household, close working proximity, etc.) with a confirmed COVID-19 case, can I be tested?
Due to limited testing capacity, tests are currently limited to symptomatic individuals. Because of your close contact however, you are advised to self-isolate for 14 days from the time of your exposure. In a shared household, this would be 14 days from the time that the COVID-19+ case in your household developed symptoms.
- I don’t have symptoms, but I’m a healthcare worker/first-responder and I’ve had close contact (e.g. household, close working proximity) with a confirmed COVID-19 case, can I be tested?
Self-isolate until Public Health contacts you regarding your next steps
I’ve Tested Negative
- If you haven’t had exposure to a confirmed COVID-19 case, you are advised to self-isolate until your symptoms resolve.
- If you’ve had exposure to a confirmed COVID-19 case, you are advised to self-isolate for 10 days from the onset of your symptoms or 14 days from the time of your exposure; whichever is longer.
- If you are a healthcare worker/first-responder, self isolate until Public Health contacts you regard your next steps.
I’ve Tested Positive
- Self-isolate for 10 days from the onset of your symptoms and until symptoms have resolved; whichever is longer. If one of your symptoms is fever, it must resolve without the use of fever-reducing medication.
Monitor Your Health
Regardless of your diagnosis, monitor your health and watch for worsening symptoms. Call HealthLinkBC at 8-1-1 at any time to talk with a nurse about your health and your possible next steps.
Seek urgent medical care at an urgent care clinic or emergency department if you have difficulty breathing or difficulty drinking. Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number immediately if you have difficulty breathing, chest pain, or sever bleeding; it may be a life-threatening emergency.