Free, confidential COVID-19 testing is available to every Californian. Get vaccinated to reduce the need for testing.

On this page:


How to get tested

Find testing near you

See a map of testing sites near you:

Find a testing location

More testing sites may be available at your area’s COVID-19 website.

Use an at-home test

Many drug stores now carry at-home kits. These let you test yourself and get results within minutes. They are available over the counter, without a prescription. Check with your local pharmacy or retail store.

Read more about at-home tests at the CDC’s Self-Testing page.

Get tested with OptumServe

California has partnered with OptumServe to provide free, confidential testing statewide. Tests are available for everyone, including:

  • Underserved communities
  • Individuals who are at high risk

Tests are by appointment only. Find a location near you and make an appointment at:

Register for testing

If you do not have internet access, call 1-888-634-1123.

OptumServe community testing sites serve all individuals who qualify for a test. This includes uninsured, underinsured, undocumented and homeless individuals. You do not need a driver’s license to get this test.


When to get tested

If you have symptoms

Vaccinated or not, get tested immediately if you’re feeling any COVID-19 symptoms.

If you were exposed

Vaccinated people should get tested within 5-7 days of exposure.

Unvaccinated people should test immediately, and again 5-7 days after.

If you go to a high-risk event

Unvaccinated people should test before and 3-5 days after.

If you travel

Unvaccinated people should test 1-3 days before travel, and 3-5 days after.

Read more in CDPH’s testing fact sheet and travel guidelines.


Cost for testing

There are no out-of-pocket costs for COVID-19 testing at a testing site. An insured person can get a COVID-19 test when needed by any provider, in or out of their health plan network, at no cost. If you’re uninsured, the government pays for your test.

But there are some COVID-19 tests you do have to pay for:

  • At-home test kits 
  • Some rapid result tests

Testing at work

Screening tests are recurring tests of people without symptoms in certain high-risk workplaces. They are meant to detect COVID-19 early and stop transmission.

In general,

  • Fully-vaccinated individuals do not need screening tests in non-healthcare settings.
  • Asymptomatic employees in healthcare settings should still get screening tests. This is true no matter their vaccination status. There are a few exceptions:
    • Facilities may stop routine testing of asymptomatic staff who are fully vaccinated where:
      • More than 70% of residents and more than 70% staff are fully vaccinated in a long-term care facility, or
      • More than 70% of staff are fully vaccinated in an acute health care facility.
    • Facilities may continue routine testing for fully-vaccinated staff with compromised immune systems. Examples are those who have undergone organ transplantation or cancer treatment. These conditions might impact the level of protection provided by COVID-19 vaccine.

Read CDPH’s Updated Testing Guidance for more about workplace screening tests.


Questions and answers


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