• Betsy Matthews

To Re-Test or Not

You had a positive Covid test and have managed through the symptoms and isolated for the appropriate period.

Do you need to re-test to confirm that you are now negative?

The short answer is no. Re-testing is generally not recommended for a couple of reasons.

  1. The PCR tests are highly sensitive and will detect even pieces of the viral RNA that remain in your system (think of it as those errant pieces of glitter you still find 3 weeks after that craft project). This can resulting in a positive result even though you are past the active infection and contagious stage.

  2. Re-testing clogs up an already taxed pipeline for testing, potentially diverting resources and/or delaying results for others that need an initial diagnosis.

In some cases, your employer may have a policy that requires a negative test to return to work. If that's the case, then we generally recommend waiting at least 14 days from your initial positive test or onset of symptoms.

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