UPMC offers COVID-19 testing at locations throughout our communities.
At most UPMC test sites, you will need a doctor's order (referral) and an appointment before your visit. If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or have a known exposure to someone with COVID-19, you can call your primary care provider (PCP) to see if you are eligible for testing and for a referral.
Please note: The UPMC Emergency Department is not the place to get a COVID-19 test, unless you are experiencing breathing problems or other severe symptoms. Test results do not come back more quickly by going to the Emergency Department. For COVID-19 testing, obtain a referral from your PCP, and visit a UPMC COVID-19 test site or UPMC Urgent Care.
COVID-19 Testing Process at UPMC
Step 1 – Get Medical Order for a COVID-19 Test
Call your PCP for an over-the-phone evaluation and if indicated, the medical provider can electronically or by written prescription order a COVID-19 test.
Ask your PCP if they provide COVID-19 testing in the office.
If you do not have a PCP or if you’re not a UPMC patient:
Step 2 – Schedule a Test
Once you have an order from a medical provider, you can see where the best location is for your COVID-19 test at UPMC testing sites.
See list of locations below and schedule online or by phone.
Step 3 – Get Tested
Bring your test prescription (if not done online), insurance card, and ID to the test site.
Follow masking guidelines and ask about instructions that are specific to the testing site.
Step 4 – Receive Results
Test results may be available in your UPMC patient portal within 24 to 48 hours. If you don’t have access to a patient portal, a UPMC provider will call with results.
UPMC Children’s Community Pediatrics
UPMC Children’s Community Pediatrics offers rapid antigen COVID-19 testing at select primary care offices to increase testing capacity for our patients. If you suspect your child has contracted COVID-19, please call your UPMC CCP office to determine what services are available.
Rapid, point-of-care diagnostic tests use a mucus sample from the nose and results are available within 15-minutes and will be used to diagnosis children with symptoms. The best time to test children for COVID-19, is shortly after they develop symptoms, within 0-5 days of the symptoms showing up.
How the Test Works
Trained UPMC providers are collecting specimens. Collection occurs in negative pressure rooms.
The test involves a “nasopharyngeal" swab. You or a provider will insert a thin device into the patient's nose into the nasal cavity to collect the specimen. Specimens are transported for testing to UPMC Clinical Laboratories.
How Do I Get My COVID-19 Test Results?
The UPMC provider who orders the test will call you with the results. The time to receive results varies based on the collection site and volume. Patients should check with their PCP or check their UPMC patient portal for results.
What Should I Do Until My Results are Available?
Patients who have their samples taken should self-isolate until they receive results. If the test is positive, we will refer patients for further care.
Call your primary care provider if you have questions or concerns about mild to moderate symptoms. You also can use UPMC AnywhereCare, our telemedicine service, for a virtual care visit.
If you have severe symptoms, such as a high fever or severe breathing trouble, call 911 or go to your local Emergency Department for care.
We are offering screening to patients before certain in-hospital procedures to make sure they do not have COVID-19, even if they don't have symptoms.
If you test positive for COVID-19, we will talk more about your specific situation and help you to make the best decision for you. Our health care providers and you will decide together whether you should still have the procedure at that time. If we move forward with the procedure, we will adapt your care to keep you, our health care workers, and others in the hospital safe.
Treatment Options for COVID-19
If you test positive for COVID-19, talk to your doctor about treatment options. You may be eligible for Paxlovid™.
Learn more about this treatment option from UPMC and see if you qualify.
COVID-19 Antibody Testing Information
Patients can find information on COVID-19 antibody testing, including risks, benefits, and testing procedures, from the below PDFs.