JCDH: Ask how long test results should take before you get swabbed

Testing turnaround progress

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - The number of COVID-19 tests administered in Alabama has gone down over the past week according to state data, but the average tests given daily is still near 7,000.

Depending on the lab, it could take anywhere from a day to a week to get back test results.

700,000 Alabamians have been tested for COVID-19 since the pandemic began, roughly 14% of the state according to state data.

With colleges requiring tests and schools resuming, an uptick in demand is expected.

There are delays in the time it takes to get a COVID-19 test result, some which have to do with staffing and supplies.

Local health officials want people to ask up front.

"I think it would be prudent to ask the lab that you're going to before you get that swab done what is the current turnaround time to get my results?" said Dr. David Hicks at JCHD.

He says if it’s one or two days, that’s good, but if it’s more than that, he suggests finding another lab.

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