COVID-19 Community Testing - Minnesota Dept. of Health

Community Testing

Stay Safe MN

COVID-19 Community Testing Sites
Find options for community saliva testing.

What to expect at the testing site

DO NOT pay your insurance company or the testing provider for your COVID test - there is NO COST to you for the test.

All costs for this test are covered by your insurance company or the federal or state government. Insurance companies may send you an Explanation of Benefits or "EOB" showing the difference between the billed cost of this COVID test and what they have paid. It may even say that a portion is "patient responsibility." This is simply for your information. It is NOT a bill, and you do not need to pay anything. The testing company, Vault, accepts what your insurance pays as full payment.

  • Wear a mask or face covering if you can.
  • You can show either your confirmation email/text or tell staff your name, birthdate, and address.
  • Bring your insurance card if you have health insurance. The test will be 100% at no cost to you whether or not you have insurance. If you do, we may ask your insurance company to help pay for your test.
  • Each person getting tested will need to have their own email address and a phone number to receive your results.

Saliva tests are more comfortable than nasal swabs and just as accurate, but they may not be a good option for those with low saliva production, such as very young children or people who have suffered a stroke. Results are emailed to you 24-48 hours after taking the test.

If you don't get your results, please email or call 800-800-5698.

How the saliva test works

  1. You must not eat, drink, chew or smoke anything for at least 30 minutes before starting a saliva test.
  2. At the testing location, you will receive a kit and use your smartphone to scan a QR code that brings you a testing website. Once on the site, a health care professional will tell you how to take the test, but you will do it yourself.
  3. You will spit into a funnel attached to a tube. Producing the required amount of saliva usually takes 10-12 minutes.
  4. When your container is filled to the line, take off the collection funnel and screw on the cap with blue preservatives. Keep screwing on the cap until the divider between the blue preservative and your saliva sample cracks and you can shake the vial to mix the blue preservative and saliva together. Shake the vial for 5 seconds.
  5. Finally, walk your vial to the submission table and throw away the packaging from the testing kit. Your sample will get sent to a lab.
  6. You will get your results emailed to you within 24-48 hours. If you don’t have an email, you’ll get a call at the phone number you provided.

After you are tested

  • If your test is negative: You will receive a text and/or email notifying you that you can access your results online. If you do not have access to the internet, there will be a number you can call for your results.
  • If your test is positive: You will receive a phone call from the nurse triage line. Please make sure to answer your phone.
  • The results of your test are not shared with anyone outside of your public health department. We do not share your information with other government agencies, employers, or health care providers.

  • I Got Tested – Now What?
    Learn more about what to expect after getting tested.

  • Have a Complaint?
    Issues with getting your test results or complaints about insurance or fraud.


Updated Friday, 08-Jan-2021 11:05:51 CST