Kids and COVID-19: Testing and Children

Students may already be back or are heading back to school soon. This, coupled with flu season and COVID-19 cases rising, make it a great opportunity to put together a plan for testing your children for COVID in the event there is a possible exposure.  Do not wait until symptoms manifest to arrange for testing if your child has had a significant exposure. Many children have very mild symptoms or are asymptomatic. Below we have provided some information to hopefully answer your questions:

  • It is recommended that children get tested at their pediatrician’s office, but drive-thru testing sites and other COVID-19 test centers also allow children to be tested. Both the antigen and PCR nasal swab diagnostic tests are safe for infants and children of any age.
    • Most testing sites require an appointment or online check in ahead of time. So, if you choose to get your child tested at a testing site it is a good idea to check with the testing site’s web page and to call ahead to ensure that your child will be able to get tested. To find where your child can be tested, visit this site
    • You can also call your selected testing location to find out about testing costs. 
  • Try to schedule an appointment as soon as your child has had a possible exposure, is experiencing symptoms, or they need a test to return to school, sports, or another activity. The optimal time for testing following an exposure is five days after exposure but many pediatricians are fully scheduled, so please do not delay in making an appointment. 

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