COVID-19 Testing Available at Cape Cod Healthcare
Cape Cod Healthcare offers safe, effective and accessible COVID-19 testing for the Cape Cod community, available 7 days a week, by appointment only with a physician's order. Drive-through testing tents are located on the campuses of Cape Cod Hospital and Falmouth Hospital.
Cape Cod Healthcare utilizes a PCR (polymerase chain reaction) nasal swab test, considered the gold-standard for accurately detecting active COVID-19 viral RNA (genetic material) in a collected specimen.
How to get tested
If you are EXPERIENCING SYMPTOMS of COVID-19, have been EXPOSED to a person confirmed positive for COVID-19, OR are ASYMPTOMATIC and seeking testing (ie: due to travel):
- Call your primary care physician. Your doctor will screen you for COVID-19 if symptomatic and submit an order for testing to the Cape Cod Healthcare drive-through testing team. You will be contacted within 24 hours with an appointment time at your location choice of either the Cape Cod Hospital testing tent or Falmouth Hospital testing tent.
- If you do not have a primary care physician or are asymptomatic and seeking testing, call our Drive-Through Testing Line at 508-862-5595 to be screened with a Cape Cod Healthcare clinical provider via phone and/or to schedule an appointment for COVID-19 testing.
- If your primary care physician is not affiliated with Cape Cod Healthcare and prefers you to be tested at one of CCHC’s drive through sites, your doctor can call our Drive-Through Testing Line at 508-862-5595 for further direction, which will include the required forms to complete and an order for testing. If your primary care provider sends an order to the drive through testing site, a member of the testing team will then call you with an appointment time for a drive-through test at your selected location.
Payment will be processed through your insurance for symptomatic or exposed individuals. For asymptomatic individuals seeking testing (ie: due to travel), the out-of-pocket cost is $110.
Please refer to the frequently asked questions below for more information on COVID-19 testing.
How long does it take to receive results?
Results for testing are currently available in approximately 24-72 hours.
Does insurance cover testing?
Testing is covered by most insurances for symptomatic individuals and for those with known exposure to a person who has tested positive for COVID-19. For asymptomatic individuals seeking testing (ie: for individuals who have returned to Massachusetts from a state and are required to either test or quarantine upon return), the out-of-pocket cost is $110.
How is my sample for testing collected?
A nurse will collect a specimen through a nasopharyngeal swab. A sterile swab is gently inserted into the back of the nostril where you may feel a tickle or gagging sensation. The swab is rotated for several seconds. Mild discomfort is common, but the test takes less than 10 seconds and should not cause pain.
Does Cape Cod Healthcare offer antibody and antigen testing?
Cape Cod Healthcare does not utilize either of these methods for COVID-19 testing, as the PCR test is considered the gold standard for accurately detecting active virus.
Although antibody testing is available through Cape Cod Healthcare Lab Services, an antibody blood test can only detect if you likely had COVID-19 at some point in the past - it won’t tell you when, so it does not help in determining if you are infectious or not. At this time, we do not know if antibodies detected in this test are specific to COVID-19 or to another virus, nor if testing positive for antibodies means a person is immune and how long immunity may last. This type of test cannot be used for clearance from travel restrictions.
An antigen test detects certain proteins in the COVID-19 virus. Although a positive antigen test is considered accurate, this test is not considered “sensitive” and results in an increased chance of false-negative results, meaning it’s possible to be infected with the virus but have a negative test result. This test is also not accepted by the state for clearance from travel restrictions.