So you’ve tested for COVID-19 using an at-home test, and the results are positive.

Now what do you do?Do you need a PCR test to confirm? Should you call your doctor? The health department? Do you need a PCR test to confirm? It depends.

The antigen rapid tests are less sensitive than PCR tests, but the bigger issue with rapid tests are false negatives vs. false positives.

Call your local health department.


In some cases, the home test involves an app that would notify public health authorities, Nefcy said. But if it doesn’t, “we would highly encourage you to call your local health department to report a positive result.”

There are two reasons for that. One is so that a public-health nurse can review your symptoms and living circumstances, and offer advice about how to isolate and whether to seek medical treatment.

“But also it’s important from an epidemiological perspective, so that we know the positivity rate out there,” Nefcy said.

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