Here at Premium Health, we offer same day testing and results. We provide patients with viral Covid-19 tests such as the RT-PCR laboratory test and the Rapid Antigen test. Not only are these tests offered on-site at any of our testing locations, but we also perform both types of testing in-home with no extra charge. We also have self testing kits called CUREXA with free next day shipping and return labels available for order.

What is the RT-PCR laboratory test?

This is a type of viral testing that is analyzed in our laboratory using the reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction method to search for the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the specimen collected via nasal or oral swab. The PCR procedure helps detect the genetic material/ DNA of the SARA-CoV-2 virus. According to the National Human Genome Research Institute, “This method adds fluorescent dyes to the PCR process to measure the amount of genetic material in a sample. In this instance, healthcare workers measure the amount of genetic material from SARS-CoV-2.” All samples are sent to our private lab to be analyzed for Covid-19 detection; thus, the results only take up to 16 hours.

All testing and sample collection are done according to current CDC guidelines and protocols. We use a CLIA-certified, high complexity laboratory specialized in molecular diagnosis and infectious diseases. This RT-PCR test meets most requirements for travel restrictions and is able to detect the SARS-CoV-2 virus with up to 98% specificity and accuracy.

Does Premium Health also offer Rapid PCR testing?

Certain Premium Health locations offer the Rapid PCR Accula test as well. This is a laboratory specialized polymerase chain reaction test. According to FDA, “The Accula SARS-CoV-2 Test performed on the Accula Dock or the Silaris Dock is a molecular in vitro diagnostic test utilizing polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and lateral flow technologies for the qualitative, visual detection of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA.” This test is especially useful in finding accurate Covid-19 test results over a short period of time since the turnaround time is 2 hours.

How does the Rapid Antigen testing work?

The Rapid antigen test helps detect the presence of the antigen which in this case is the viral protein; therefore, it is a less accurate form of Covid-19 testing when compared to the RT-PCR. Additionally, in order for the viral infection to be detected, the infection exposure must be at a later stage; thus, it is generally recommended that individuals with no symptoms get tested using RT-PCR rather than Rapid Antigen testing. Giorgia Guglielmi from Nature states that the Rapid Antigen test “can detect the virus only when it reaches a high level in a person’s body — with perhaps hundreds of thousands or millions of viral copies per milliliter of sample. The virus usually reaches these levels around the time that symptoms start, when people are at their most contagious.” Although the rapid Antigen test has its limitation in terms of accuracy, this test has a turnaround time of 15 min and can be helpful in diagnosing symptomatic patients.

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