FAQ: COVID-19 Testing

Below are frequently asked questions related to COVID-19 testing. Click on another category to the left to see more FAQs.

For more information on coronavirus, visit uclahealth.org/coronavirus.


Yes, UCLA Health offers diagnostic testing for COVID-19 in all primary care, pediatric and immediate care clinics, but you must have a telehealth appointment with a physician first.

Here are the steps for COVID-19 testing:

  • Call your primary care physician to set up a video visit.
  • Discuss your symptoms or exposures with the physician during this visit. Your physician will determine if you require a test order or recommend another plan of care.
  • If a test is ordered, the physician will provide information on how to schedule the test.
  • Visit your testing site at your scheduled time and complete the test.
  • Test results will be available on myuclahealth.org within 24 hours.

If you are not a UCLA Health patient, LA City and LA County offers COVID-19 tests in many locations.

UCLA Health uses either a nasopharyngeal PCR swab test administered by a health care worker or a mid-turbinate self-swab PCR test to diagnose a COVID-19 infection. After sample collection, results are returned in about a day. We co-test each sample for the flu, since many of the symptoms of COVID-19 and influenza are the same.

COVID-19 diagnostic tests are generally covered by insurance if the test is medically required, or you have symptoms. Please talk to your primary care physician about your individual case and contact your insurance provider prior to scheduling to confirm coverage. If you do not have a primary care physician, please call 310-825-2631.

Currently there is no blood test available for COVID-19.

Test results will be returned in 1-2 days via myUCLAhealth. For any specific questions, please reach out to your primary care physician’s office. If you do not have a primary care physician, call 310-825-2631 or visit the primary care page.

An antibody or serology test is a blood test that looks for signs of a previous COVID-19 infection. It detects antibodies or proteins in the blood that are found in response to an infection. Talk to your primary care doctor if you are interested in an antibody test. Results are typically returned in 1-2 days.

The surgery or department coordinator will let you know if you need to complete a COVID-19 screening test before your surgery or procedure. They will provide detailed information on the required timing of the test, and help you schedule. If you haven’t been contacted, please reach out to the department, or call 310-825-2631.

If you are a UCLA student with a campus insurance plan, please visit the student insurance page and click on the “COVID-19” link at top for more information.

Yes, but your doctor must order your COVID-19 test. Please speak to your doctor to schedule or call 310-825-2631.

For other COVID-19 diagnostic testing resources, please visit LA County's free COVID-19 testing website or a local pharmacy.