Is There an At-Home COVID-19 Test?

Medically Reviewed by Dan Brennan, MD on January 02, 2023

If you have symptoms of COVID-19, such as a fever, a dry cough, or shortness of breath,  it is much easier now to test yourself for the coronavirus. Medical professionals can test some people in clinics or hospitals, but there are several at-home collection tests available. They include:

  • BinaxNOW - The antigen test can be purchased online or at drugstores. You test yourself with a nasal swab and use the accompanying solution to get results on a test card the size of a credit card. You receive results within 15 minutes.
  • Ellume - This antigen costs about $18. It also uses an app to guide you through the process using a nasal swab and results are known within 15 minutes.
  • QuickVue. Also an over-the-counter antigen test, you get two tests for about $25. After you swab, you put the swab in a solution and wait 10 minutes. you then put a paper strip in the solution and changes color to indicate positive or negative.
  • Cue - This is a molecular COVID-19 test and should be available without a prescription.
  • Lucira Health’s “All-In-One” - Costing less than $29, it requires a prescription. You collect a sample through a nasal swab that you then put in a vial of solution. You then put the vial into a portable, battery-operated device. Within 30 minutes, a light on the device indicates negative or positive. 

While you may not know for sure if you have it, most people with mild symptoms can recover from COVID-19 on their own at home. You should:

  • Rest. It can ease your symptoms and may help you recover faster.
  • Stay away from others. Don’t go to work, school, or public places. Try to keep yourself separate from other people in your home.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. Dehydration will make your symptoms worse.
  • Ask your doctor about over-the-counter medicines that may ease your symptoms.
  • If your symptoms get worse, call your doctor or a hospital.

Call your doctor or 911 if you have serious symptoms of COVID-19, such as: