SPECIMEN COLLECTIONS FOR COVID-19 TESTING
DLO wants to remind you that swab specimen collection for active COVID-19 infections must be done in a clinic setting such as a doctor's office or hospital. We do not collect PCR swab COVID-19 specimens in our patient service centers. If you have symptoms, please call your healthcare provider and do not visit a DLO lab.
If you need the COVID-19 antibody test, DLO can collect your blood sample in our patient service centers. You will need a doctor's order for the antibody test.
DLO would also like to encourage our patients to schedule an appointment to help reduce your wait time. To make an appointment and view our operating hours, visit dlolab.com/locations and click the "Make an Appointment" link on the site you want to visit.
DLO's top priority is always the health and safety of our patients, employees, and the communities we serve. Part of that commitment is to help you get answers to the many questions you have about the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Who should get tested?
It’s important to reach out to your doctor immediately if you have any reason to suspect you have COVID-19.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends getting tested if you:
- Experience symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath)
- Have been in close contact with a person with COVID-19
- Have recently traveled from an area with a widespread outbreak
Don’t wait. Early detection means you can take precautions right away to limit the spread of the illness to those around you.
Where to get tested
If you have any reason to suspect you have an active COVID-19 infection, it’s important to reach out to your doctor or another authorized healthcare provider immediately for guidance on where to get tested in your community. DLO does not collect COVID-19 PCR test specimens for active infections at our patient service centers.
You’ll also see our medical staff wearing protective clothing and masks—this is an extra safeguard recommended by the CDC to protect healthcare professionals.
How COVID-19 testing works
If COVID-19 PCR testing is appropriate for you, your healthcare provider will collect your specimen (for example, nose or throat swab). Your respiratory specimens will then be sent to a lab, such as DLO, for advanced testing. To check for COVID-19 antibodies, your healthcare provider can send you to a DLO Patient Service Center for a blood collection to test your blood for IgG antibodies, which can identify individuals who have developed a serological response.
DLO and our joint venture partner, Quest Diagnostics, are performing the testing. Since Quest began processing the highly complex COVID-19 tests on March 9, they have steadily increased testing capacity to meet the evolving needs of healthcare providers and patients in our communities. On April 21, DLO began offering a COVID-19 SARS-CoV-2 immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibody serology test which can identify individuals who have developed a serological response. Specimens for the IgG test can be collected at any DLO location. Due to the high demand for testing, delays in results may occur, although most test results are reported within 48 hours.
Getting test results through MyQuest
Confirm that your healthcare provider is sending your PCR or the IgG antibody test specimens to DLO for processing. If so, your test results can be automatically sent to you through the secure MyQuest™ online portal. This is typically the quickest way to get results. If you need assistance creating an account, visit our MyQuest Account Creation Guide page.
COVID-19 or the flu?
Symptoms of COVID-19 mimic the flu, but it’s important to take either illness very seriously. Speak with your doctor to determine if your symptoms call for COVID-19 or flu testing.
COVID-19 testing emergency use authorization (EUA)
- This test has not been FDA cleared or approved;
- This test has been authorized by FDA under an EUA for use by authorized laboratories;
- This test has been authorized only for the detection of nucleic acid from SARS-CoV-2, not for any other viruses or pathogens; and
- This test is only authorized for the duration of the declaration that circumstances exist justifying the authorization of emergency use of in vitro diagnostic tests for detection and/or diagnosis of COVID-19 under Section 564(b)(1) of the Act, 21 U.S.C. § 360bbb-3(b)(1), unless the authorization is terminated or revoked sooner
Simple steps for prevention
Protect yourself and your loved ones from COVID-19 with simple prevention methods. The CDC recommends that you:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
- Stay home when you are sick
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces
- Wash your hands often with soap and water
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 (formally known as 2019-nCoV) is the name for the respiratory syndrome caused by infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The World Health Organization recently declared COVID-19 an international public health emergency.
Does DLO provide testing for COVID-19?
Yes. Through Quest Diagnostics, DLO is one of the labs processing the complex COVID-19 testing during this public health emergency. Keep in mind that you need to contact a doctor or authorized healthcare provider to have your specimen collected (for example, nose or throat swab). You cannot go to a DLO patient service center for specimen collection of an active COVID-19 PCR infection, but DLO locations can collect for the IgG antibody test.
Are DLO and Quest increasing its testing capacity to meet demand?
Yes. DLO and Quest have steadily increased COVID-19 testing capacity to meet the growing demands of both healthcare providers and patients in our communities. Demand remains high and we are processing tests as fast as possible.
How do I get tested for COVID-19?
If you suspect you may have COVID-19, contact your doctor or an authorized healthcare provider immediately for guidance. Your doctor can review your symptoms to determine what appropriate testing is needed. If COVID-19 PCR testing makes sense for you, your doctor will direct you where to get tested, which includes collecting your specimens (for example, nose or throat swab). Your respiratory specimens will be sent to a lab, such as DLO, for advanced testing.
How do I get COVID-19 test results?
There are multiple ways to get your test results. Your doctor will call you, or you can get them online through our secure MyQuest™ portal. MyQuest is typically the fastest way to get your results; however, it can only access your results if your doctor sent your test specimens to DLO. If you don’t already have a MyQuest account, signing up is free and easy.
Can I go to a DLO patient service center to be tested?
For PCR testing, you must reach out to your doctor or an authorized healthcare provider for guidance on you where to get tested, which includes collecting your specimens (for example, nose or throat swab). DLO does not collect COVID-19 PCR test specimens at our patient service centers. The respiratory specimens collected by your healthcare provider are then sent to labs like DLO to process the tests. For IgG tests, DLO can collect specimens at any of our statewide DLO locations.
Is it safe to go to a DLO patient service center for other testing services not related to COVID-19?
Yes. DLO has strong safety procedures in place at all times. These protect patients and employees from coming in contact with any infectious diseases. During the COVID-19 public health crisis, we have taken more precautions. Strengthened measures include:
- Patients are brought to an empty draw room when available to shorten the waiting room stay.
- Patients are required wear a face covering when visiting DLO. Homemade face coverings and bandanas are fine.
- Only patients are allowed to enter a DLO facility unless a caregiver is needed. Caregivers must also wear a face covering,
- Gloves are provided to patients as requested.
- Draw room chairs and other surfaces are thoroughly cleaned between patients
- Social distancing is fostered by limiting the number of chairs in the PSC waiting rooms.
- Enhanced COVID-19 safety training for employees and proper use of personal protective equipment (PPE).
Also, patients who suspect they have an active COVID-19 infection should not come to our patient service centers. They should contact their doctor or an authorized healthcare provider.
Can I order this test online for myself?
No. If you suspect you have COVID-19, contact your doctor or an authorized healthcare provider. If testing is right for you, your doctor will direct you where to get tested, which includes collecting your specimens (for example, nose or throat swab). Those respiratory specimens are then sent to labs like DLO to process the tests. At this time, COVID-19 testing cannot be performed through DLO Direct, our consumer-initiated testing program.
Still have questions?
For answers to more questions about COVID-19, healthcare providers and patients are welcome to call 866-404-1550, the national call center provided by Quest Diagnostics. This call center can provide answers to many questions, but they cannot provide answers regarding patient results.
CDC COVID-19 test statements:
The test has not been FDA cleared or approved or authorized. The test has been validated according to CLIA, but FDA’s independent review of this validation is pending.