If you are taking a COVID test at home, who should you report the results to?

With COVID cases on the rise again in New Jersey, many state residents are buying over-the-counter rapid tests that can be done at home.

However, some people aren’t sure what they should or shouldn’t do if you get a positive result.

Dr. Ed Lifshitz, medical director of the New Jersey Department of Health’s Communicable Diseases Service, said there’s no easy way for the public to report their own results. What is important, however, is what they do with the information.

In other words, Lifshitz said you don’t need to report home test results to the Department of Health, but “you may need to report to your place of work, school, daycare, to those kinds of places so they know and take precautions, but no, not directly to the state.

If so, where do the antigen test results come from?

He said that in addition to the PCR test results that are reported every day, the Ministry of Health also tracks the number of positive antigen (rapid test) results from providers in schools and health care facilities and long-term care.

If someone else does a COVID test on you, it’s automatically reported to the state.

If you test at home where you are supervised by a medical professional online and then send the sample to a lab, the test result will automatically be reported to the state.

What about contact tracing?

Lifshitz said a number of contact tracings are still being done in long-term care facilities, schools and other gathering places.

“Contact tracing is the steps we take to try to determine who you may have exposed so that we can contact them, so they know the steps they can take to quarantine themselves, to protect themselves,” did he declare.

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He said that for the general population, contact tracing is not being done as thousands of people test positive every day, so if you do get COVID it is important that you make sure those who may have been exposed be informed.

The COVID NJ App

He said the COVID NJ app works as a type of contact tracer.

“If you test positive, it will automatically notify everyone you’ve been in close contact with, just because your phone knows where you’ve been,” he said.

Lifshitz said state health officials continue to conduct case investigations, where individuals are interviewed to try to determine where they might have contracted COVID, if it was a place of super spread, how sick they were, etc., to help the Ministry of Health understand any new pandemic trends or identify new variants.

He said in cases where you get a positive COVID test, your first call if you feel sick or worried should be to your doctor or the local health department.

“After that, your next concern should be those around you, your loved ones, your family members, getting in touch with your contacts, people you may have been exposed to so they know they might be at risk. “, did he declare. .

David Matthau is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at [email protected]

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