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COVID-19 Testing Information

Ventura County Public Health is engaging community-based organizations for their support in helping distribute COVID-19 home test kits to uninsured, underinsured, or with poor access to medical care or at high risk for severe disease. Your organization can apply online by completing the home test kits request form.

Effective February 29, 2024, the at-home testing program will be coming to an end.

Organizations eligible to request at-home tests include:

  • Community-based organizations
  • Shelters and food banks
  • Skilled nursing and long-term care facilities
  • K-12 schools
  • Licensed early childhood education
  • Health care centers
  • Pharmacies
  • City and county offices
  • Libraries
  • If you are unsure if your organization qualifies for tests, please email rapidtestrequest@ventura.org

If you are interested, you may submit your request form. Once you have submitted your request, you can expect a call from a Public Health Team Member within 24 to 48 hours.

For questions, comments, or more information, please contact: rapidtestrequest@ventura.org

Test kits are available through the California Department of Public Health while supplies last. This means that if supplies are exhausted sooner, test kits will no longer be available.

Testing is recommended:

  • If you are feeling any symptoms – regardless of your vaccination status. COVID-19 symptoms can feel like a common cold, seasonal allergies, or flu. COVID testing in California is accessible to anyone who needs it.
  • If you’ve been exposed to COVID-19, get tested right away. If you test negative, retest 3-5 days after your exposure date, even if you have no symptoms. Test immediately if symptoms develop.
  • Consider testing before and 3-5 days after a gathering, a significant event, or travel, especially if you will be around people at higher risk (older adults, immunocompromised, unvaccinated people).
  • You do not need to get tested if you have recovered from COVID-19 in the last three months and have had no new symptoms since your recent exposure.
  • Read the California Department of Public Health’s complete testing guidance. (Your school or workplace may have their testing requirements.)

Testing alone will not stop the spread of COVID-19. The best way to lower your risk of getting COVID-19 is to get the COVID-19 vaccine and to continue practicing everyday prevention. This includes wearing a mask covering your nose and mouth in high-risk settings and staying home when sick. Visit the CDC Testing Page and https://covid19.ca.gov/get-tested/ for more information about COVID-19 testing.

Where to Get a Test

Talk to your doctor or healthcare provider to get a COVID-19 test. Call or visit the website of your local pharmacy to find out if they offer COVID-19 testing—view how to get at-home test kits at: https://covid19.ca.gov/get-tested. Test kits may be available by prescription or over the counter in a pharmacy or retail store.

Beginning November 20, every U.S. household can again place another order to receive four more free COVID-19 rapid tests delivered directly to their home: https://www.covid.gov/tests

Home Test to Treat is a federal program that offers free tests and free treatment (if eligible) for COVID-19 at home 24/7. No insurance or appointments needed!

What to Know When Getting Tested

  • Talk to your doctor about which test is proper for you.
  • If you have to be tested for screening purposes such as for work or travel, ensure you get a test that meets the requirements of your employer, airline, or other institution.
Positive test?
  • Stay home. Let your work or school know, follow their guidance and COVID-19 isolation recommendations to prevent spreading the virus to others. 
  • Ages 12 or older? Get FREE medications for COVID-19 that are safe and highly effective at preventing serious illness, when taken within 5 days of symptom onset.
  • If you have difficulties accessing COVID-19 medication, you can make a free phone or video appointment with a health care provider through California’s COVID-19 telehealth service by visiting sesamecare.com/covid19 or calling 1-855-780-3855. This program will run to the end of February 2024. Visit YouCanBeatIt.org for information on additional telehealth options that are available beyond February 2024.

Negative test? 

  • Wear a mask. Check with your work or school for further guidance.
  • Test again in 1-2 days.
  • Testing negative and presenting COVID-19 symptoms, consider antigen testing again at least another day later after the second test (for a total of 3 tests) OR getting a laboratory-based molecular test (such as NAAT/PCR).
  • Contact healthcare provider who may consider testing for other viral infections or illnesses.
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