Essentia Health moving to self-swab testing for COVID-19

(Fargo, ND)-- With COVID-19 cases still high in the region, as well as the demand for testing, Essentia Health is changing its testing procedures. Effective immediately, all patients who schedule a COVID test at one of their clinics will receive a kit to perform their own test. This is for patients who want a test only and are not scheduling a routine visit with their provider.    

Patients must schedule a test at an Essentia clinic in their region. They can do so through our MyChart patient portal, by calling their local clinic or scheduling an E-visit.    

Once the patient has arrived at their scheduled appointment, they can check in, receive a test kit, then go back to their vehicle and conduct the simple nasal swab (instructions provided). They will return the sample to the designated collection location. The entire process should take about 15 minutes. 

Not only has demand for tests increased, but the shutdown of many government testing sites has funneled more patients into Essentia’s clinics, creating volume challenges for our staff and patients.