How do I sign up?
Schedule your testing appointment by clicking the Schedule button on this website (Under construction). If you have difficulty, you may call [ENTER PHONE NUMBER HERE].
Who can participate?
Anyone residing in Oakland, California, is welcome and encouraged to participate. Anyone in the Bay Area. Anyone with symptoms or without is welcomed.
Why should I participate?
You may benefit from knowing your COVID-19 infection status, including knowledge of past infection (that may have gone unnoticed or undiagnosed). Knowing you are positive for active COVID-19 infection and observing more strict social distancing measures, even if you are feeling well, may also help protect those around you.
It is very important that everyone, REGARDLESS OF TEST RESULTS, CONTINUE THE CURRENT PUBLIC HEALTH ADVISORY which includes - remaining at home, physical distancing, thorough and frequent handwashing, wearing masks in public settings and avoiding hand contact with face. We are so fortunate that these strategies are working to slow the epidemic in the Bay area - all because of everyone joining in to be part of the solution!
Do I have to register ahead of time?
We are asking all participants to please register ahead of time to help things run smoothly. For now, please see the Contact Section.
Who gets priority?
Anyone with symptoms, first responders, health care workers, essential workers, and high risk individuals will be given priority.
Can I participate if I'm a resident but I don't have a ZIP code?
Yes, you may participate!
Do I have to show identification?
You will NOT need to show identification. Each participant will be asked for their name and date of birth before the test is administered.
If I am an "essential worker" who lives outside Oakland, am I eligible to participate? Do I need to prove it?
Yes, if you are currently an "essential worker" in the city of Oakland, and live in or outside of Oakland, you can be tested. Please indicate your place of work during the registration process.
Can I register for my family members?
Yes, you can include all family in your reservation and arrive together.
Do I have to drive to the testing site? Can I take BART and walk up?
We will be accepting both drive-through and walk-up patients at [Location Approval Pending].
What happens when I get to the testing site?
Volunteers will greet you from a safe distance and direct you.
[Enter entire process on how the testing will work here]
How long will the testing process take?
Your time slot will be 15 minutes; please take the time to pre-register to help us minimize wait times.
Will bathrooms be available on site?
[Location Pending Approval]
As of right now, to be on the safe side, the bathrooms will not be open.
I am homebound, can the test be administered to me?
Please contact us at the Contact Section
and tell us you are homebound. We will not be doing house calls for this study, but someone will be in touch with you if we are able to conduct an in-home test.
What does being involved in the study entail?
There are three main parts to the study:1) a survey, 2) a mouth or throat/nasal swab (COVID19 infection), and 3) a finger prick for a blood sample (antibody test).
The survey asks questions about your living environment and medical history to help understand who may be at higher risk of infection or for getting sick. The swabs are commonly used in the clinic setting to test for other common viruses like the flu. To make sure the experience is as safe as possible, you will be tested by medical professionals using appropriate protective equipment and procedures to minimize any possible exposure.
What local groups are involved?
A diverse group of local individuals and groups are involved in executing the testing - the pending Fire Department, the pending Fire Department, and many local volunteers, donors, social services organizations, and the community.
What is the purpose of this study in Oakland?
This is an opportunity for the Oakland community to undergo voluntary testing - for infection with the virus that causes COVID-19 AND to test for antibodies that may indicate past COVID-19 infection. You may have seen in the news that it is common for this virus to infect people but not cause symptoms, which has made it hard to stop the spread of infection. By understanding how common this infection is in the community (in people with or without symptoms), we can help support public health efforts to prevent the spread of infection.
How is this study being funded? Can I help donate?
Will participating disqualify me from any future testing available?
No, you will still be able to participate in any future testing.
Is the test mandatory?
No, the test is entirely voluntary.
What happens during the testing process?
The test will consist of a swab of the inside of the mouth, and a “prick” of the finger (not a full blood draw). [ENTER TEST PROVIDER] will provide the vials for the samples and medical professionals will come to Oracle Arena (Pending Approval) to demonstrate and train the phlebotomists and first responders who collect the samples while wearing appropriate protective equipment at all times.
Will I be exposed to the disease at the test site?
We will be taking every precaution to protect people on site. All volunteers will be wearing protective equipment and we will be instructing participants and volunteers to maintain distance.
Is this testing interfering with the care for sick patients with COVID-19?
No. Testing done for clinical purposes will always take priority over testing that is done as part of our study. If you are symptomatic your results will also be addressed as priority.
How will I know my results?
[PENDING RESEARCH TEAM AND COLLABORATION]
When will I get my results?
[PENDING RESEARCH TEAM AND COLLABORATION]
The samples will be analyzed at [ENTER TEST PROVIDER] and our goal is to communicate results to each positive individual within 7 days. (Please note that if there is a surge in urgent hospital tests, results may take longer.) While the PCR viral Infection test results are expected to take less than 7 it is important to know that the antibody tests will take 4-6 weeks.
My COVID-19 swab (PCR Test) is positive: what do I do now?
The test for the virus that causes COVID-19 is very specific, so this means that you do have the virus in your nose/throat. Whether or not you have symptoms, please plan to self-isolate for at least 14 days from the date of testing, AND, if you have symptoms, for at least 3 days after you feel completely recovered. For guidance about how to self-isolate, please visit the CDC’s website Click here
Please notify your primary care provider of your test results.
[we are in the process or setting up follow up care. If there is anyone that may help the community to follow with care please contact us for an important collaboration.
My COVID-19 swab (PCR Test) is negative: what do I do now?
You do not have evidence of COVID-19 infection at this time. However, the test for the virus that causes COVID-19 is not perfect and may miss a small proportion of cases, so a negative test is not a guarantee that you do not have or will not get COVID-19. As such, please continue to adhere to Alameda County’s “shelter-in-place” order, as well as keeping up frequent hand washing and social distancing.
My COVID-19 antibody blood test is positive: what does that mean?
This means you have evidence of past infection with COVID-19. However, it is important to note that at this time, we do not know if having antibodies means you are protected against future infection. We hope to learn more about this in the future.
My COVID-19 antibody blood test is negative: what does that mean?
This means you do not have evidence of past infection with COVID-19. This can be for many reasons, including never being exposed or infected, or being early in the course of infection.
Where are the results being stored and who has access to them?
[PENDING RESEARCH TEAM AND COLLABORATION]
The results will be stored securely in a HIPAA-compliant database. [ENTER TEST PROVIDER] doctors and technical staff with appropriate clearance will have access to them, similar to patient data at a hospital. Oakland individuals will be able to get tested without storing any personal information (as long as they are OK with there being no way to communicate results back to them), or request their personal information to be deleted after receiving their results.
What is COVID-19 (caused by a novel coronavirus)?
COVID-19 refers to the illness caused by a novel coronavirus called SARS-CoV-2. It was first described in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China and has spread worldwide, including in the United States. The 19 suffix attached to the end dictates that it was discovered in 2019.
How does the virus spread?
This virus likely originated from an animal source but now is spreading between people. As with many other viruses, person-person spread mainly occurs when an infected person coughs or sneezes and their respiratory droplets come into contact with the eyes, nose, and mouth of other people who are nearby. There is also some evidence that this virus can spread from people who are infected but feel well, and from touching recently contaminated surfaces and then touching one’s nose, eyes or mouth. There is also some evidence that virus particles can remain on contaminated surfaces for several days.
I am feeling sick: what are the symptoms of COVID-19 and how can I get help?
Patients with this virus have had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms that can include:
- shortness of breath (most common)
- unexplained muscle aches
- GI upset
- diarrhea (less common)
The CDC recommends seeking immediate medical attention if you develop any of the following emergency signs:
- Trouble breathing
- Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
- New confusion or inability to wake up
- Bluish lips or face
You can use the CDC’s coronavirus self-checker to get a better idea of what your next steps should look like if you are feeling ill: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/index.html
I have more questions - where can I get those answered?