Important update: Healthcare facilities
CDC has updated select ways to operate healthcare systems effectively in response to COVID-19 vaccination. Learn more
Given new evidence on the B.1.617.2 (Delta) variant, CDC has updated the guidance for fully vaccinated people. CDC recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status. Children should return to full-time in-person learning in the fall with layered prevention strategies in place.
The White House announced that vaccines will be required for international travelers coming into the United States, with an effective date of November 8, 2021. For purposes of entry into the United States, vaccines accepted will include FDA approved or authorized and WHO Emergency Use Listing vaccines. More information is available here.
Travel requirements to enter the United States are changing, starting November 8, 2021. More information is available here.

Getting a COVID-19 Test

Getting a COVID-19 Test
Updated Sept. 12, 2022

COVID-19 Tests

A COVID-19 test can tell if you have COVID-19.

You can get a COVID-19 test at a drug store.

You can get a COVID-19 test at a health center.

You can get a COVID-19 test at your doctor’s office.


You can take a COVID-19 test at home.

You might need to take more than one at-home test.

Follow the instructions that come with the at-home test.


When to Get a COVID-19 Test

Get a COVID-19 test right away if you feel sick.


You might need a COVID-19 test even if you do not feel sick.

Get a COVID-19 test if you were with someone with COVID-19.

Wait 5 days after you were with them to get tested.


You could know people who could get very sick from COVID-19.

Get a COVID-19 test before you are around them.


After Getting a COVID-19 Test

You can get some COVID-19 test results quickly.

At-home test results are ready in minutes.

Instructions on at-home tests will tell you what the results mean.

Ask someone what the results mean if you need help.


Test results from a doctor may take longer.

You could get a phone call with COVID-19 test results.

You could look online to get COVID-19 test results.

Ask your doctor what the results mean if you need help.


Stay at home until you get your COVID-19 test results.


What to Do If You Have COVID-19

Stay at home when you have COVID-19.

Stay away from other people in your home.

Wear a mask around other people in your home.

Stay home for at least 5 days.


You can leave home after 5 days if you do not feel sick.

You can leave home after 5 days if your fever is gone.

Wear a mask around others when you leave home for 10 days.

Stay away from people who could get very sick from COVID-19 for 10 days.


You might feel sick for more than 5 days.

Stay home until your fever is gone.

Stay home until you feel better.

Tell someone if you are worried about how you feel.


Get Help If You Are Very Sick

Sometimes COVID-19 can make you feel very sick.

Get help if you are worried about how sick you feel.

Call your doctor if you are worried about how you feel.

Ask your doctor if you should get medicine.

Call 1-800-232-0233 to find a place to get medicine.

Call 9-1-1 if you need help right away.

Tell the operator you need help with COVID-19.

Development of these materials was supported by a grant from the CDC Foundation, using funding provided by its donors. The materials were created by the Center for Literacy & Disability Studies, Department of Allied Health Sciences, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Center for Inclusive Design and Innovation at Georgia Tech. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provided subject matter expertise and approved the content. The use of the names of private entities, products, or enterprises is for identification purposes only and does not imply CDC endorsement.

Project funding ended 9/30/2021. All edits after that date are completed solely by CDC.