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Is COVID’s winter surge already here? Experts warn the pandemic isn’t over

A new surge of Covid-19 cases is expected to start hitting the United States around Thanksgiving just as the holiday season begins, public health experts are warning.

But with more and more Americans vaccinated, it’s not likely to linger as long or do as much damage because there’s a level of protection this season that wasn’t there last year, they say.

“I don’t think the spike will be as bad as last winter because we have vaccines available and the approval for younger age groups is a big game-changer, especially for hospitalizations and death rates,” said Monica Wang, an associate professor of community health sciences at the Boston University School of Public Health.

Dr. Sadiya Khan, an epidemiologist at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, agreed.

“I remain hopeful with the approval of vaccines for 5- to 11-year-olds that we are heading into a safer holiday season than last year,” she said.

Still, the threat of another Covid surge is real and political leaders like California Gov. Gavin Newsom, whose state is still recovering from a wave of delta variant infections that clogged hospital emergency rooms, are urging Americans to remain vigilant.

Credit / Article By Denise Chow and Corky Siemaszko:


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COVID-19 Rapid Testing | Covid Testing in Schaumburg1225 N Roselle Rd, Unit #1227Schaumburg, IL 60195
(847) 370-6727

If you looking for a free covid-19 testing location near Schaumburg Township, we’ve conveniently located the intersection of Roselle Road & Gold Rd in Schaumburg. We serve free rapid covid testing and free RT PCR covid testing to all the residents in Greater Chicago and Surrounding.

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Which Test Should You Use After Exposure to COVID?

If you’ve been in close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19, you’re going to need to get tested.

Your vaccination status determines whether you need to get tested right away or need to wait a few days after exposure. But what test should you use? With the increased availability of rapid at-home COVID-19 tests, it can be difficult to figure out which test is right for your current needs.

You have two options: rapid (or antigen) tests or reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) tests.1

The first is what you can typically scoop up at the pharmacy, a rapid test that can give you results at home in minutes. PCR is your standard COVID-19 test that needs to be sent to a lab.

Although antigen and PCR tests are both used to detect an active COVID-19 infection, their sensitivity to the virus is not the same. Here’s what you need to know about the difference between the two.

Does It Matter What Time of Day You Get Tested for COVID?

What’s the Difference Between Antigen and PCR tests?
“Rapid antigen tests are designed to detect the presence of a viral protein or antigen, while RT-PCR tests are designed to detect the presence of viral genetic material, or viral RNA,” Ashley Lipps, MD, infectious diseases physician at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, tells Verywell. “Both types of tests are generally accurate, although RT-PCR tests are more sensitive than antigen tests, meaning, less likely to get a false negative result. The benefits of antigen testing are that the results are available quicker and are less expensive.”

Rapid antigen tests require a higher level of the virus to be present before turning positive. On the other hand, PCR tests can remain positive as long as it detects any small virus material, even when you’re not contagious anymore.2

“RT-PCR tests detect the viral genome after amplifying a small target section millions of times,” Sheldon Campbell, MD, Ph.D., FCAP, associate director of Yale Medicine’s clinical microbiology lab and professor of laboratory medicine at Yale School of Medicine, tells Verywell. “Because of the amplification step, RT-PCR tests are more sensitive than rapid antigen tests.”

Although the PCR test is more sensitive, neither test is perfect and there’s always a small chance you might get a false result. Sometimes getting a second test is recommended.1

What This Means For You
You need to get tested after a potential COVID-19 exposure to confirm whether you are infected or not. Unless you have symptoms, a rapid antigen test may suffice. If you have symptoms and got a negative antigen test result, you should get a PCR test.

Which Should You Use?
According to the CDC, fully vaccinated individuals do not need to quarantine after a potential COVID-19 exposure if they are asymptomatic, but they should still get tested five to seven days after exposure.3

“Unless you have symptoms, an antigen test is likely adequate for this purpose,” Campbell says. “If you have symptoms, use a PCR test. It’s more sensitive, and diagnosing COVID infection is critical both for prevention and treatment with medications that can prevent more severe disease.”

If you are not fully vaccinated, you need to quarantine for 14 days after potential COVID-19 exposure and watch out for any symptoms. However, the quarantine period generally varies depending on the circumstances outlined by your local public health department.3

Florida Students Won’t Be Required to Quarantine After Exposure to COVID
“For individuals who are not fully vaccinated, testing should be done at the time the exposure is known and again in another five to seven days if the initial test is negative,”4 Lipps says. “Either a rapid antigen or RT-PCR test can be used, but RT-PCR tests do have higher sensitivity.”

If you do not have health insurance and you need to get tested for COVID-19, talk to a healthcare provider and confirm if they are willing to participate in the HRSA COVID-19 Uninsured Program, which means that they will bill the federal government for the diagnostic test instead of charging you.5

Is It Necessary to Get Tested Twice?
Unvaccinated people should get tested immediately after exposure. If the test comes back negative, they should take a second test five to seven days after the initial one or if symptoms develop.4

“Under most circumstances, using one type of test will suffice,” Lipps says. “However, there may be certain circumstances where your healthcare provider may recommend a second test.”

If you think there’s a good chance you have COVID-19 but your rapid test is negative, you can get a PCR test since antigen tests have higher rates of false negatives, she adds. For instance, the CDC recommends that people who are symptomatic but received a negative antigen test result need to confirm those results with a PCR test to avoid delays in diagnosis, treatment, and infection control.6

While testing after a potential exposure is necessary, experts also emphasize the importance of testing before attending any gathering where you might transmit the virus if you carry it without your knowledge.

“The most important time to get a COVID test is before you do something risky, like going to a crowded event or meeting with a vulnerable loved one, not after the fact,” Campbell says. “The antigen test seems to be a reasonably good test for being infectious. It’s best used to manage risk, to test before being in a setting where you might spread COVID to others.”

The information in this article is current as of the date listed, which means newer information may be available when you read this. For the most recent updates on COVID-19, visit our coronavirus news page.

Key Takeaways

  • If you’re looking to get tested for COVID you have two options: a rapid antigen test or a PCR test.
  • PCR tests are more sensitive than the antigen test.
  • Unless you have symptoms, the antigen test is likely enough.

Blog / Article Author Link By By Carla Delgado

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Free Rapid & RT-PCR COVID-19 Testing near Schaumburg and Surrounding Area

Rapid COVID-19 tests in Schaumburg, IL

About one-third of those who get infected with COVID-19 show no symptoms, but they can still infect others. To check whether you are infected or not, take a quick rapid test twice a week(every 3 to 4 days). When people test positive and quarantine themselves, the virus is less likely to spread. Even if you’ve been vaccinated, there’s still a possibility you can get affected or transfer COVID-19 to someone else, so you should get tested on a regular basis. COVID-19 quick Rapid testing is in high demand around the country as schools, businesses, and travel are reopening. Rapid Test gives you the result in less than 15 minutes. If you schedule prior, other types of tests are also available, such as RT-PCR, which can usually provide
results in 24 to 48 hours. However, RT-PCR test results can take up to four days depending on the testing center.

Which one should you choose Rapid test or RT-PCR?

The rapid test is as same as antigen tests. They detect the protein product of the virus and works much in the same way that a home pregnancy test works. But they are not always accurate. The results of RT-PCR tests can take anywhere from two to five days. Rapid tests, on the other hand, can provide results in 10 minutes, but there are several pros and cons. Rapid tests have a higher rate of false-negative results than RT-PCR tests, which means the test could show you don’t have COVID where you actually do. RT-PCR tests are relatively fast, sensitive, and reliable, with results available in 3-4 hours, however, this can take longer as samples must be sent to specialized external laboratories first (1-2 days on average).

The technology is widely available since several diagnostic and research businesses produce RT-PCR products, tests, and machines. Some RT-PCR test was developed as an “all-in-one” kit, which reduces laboratory handling and contamination risks.

How RT-PCR test works?

Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing can detect even very small amounts of viral genetic material in a sample by duplicating it many times over through a complex laboratory process called amplification.

Firstly, A test sample is swabbed from the back of the nose and processed to isolate genetic material.
Small pieces of genetically engineered genetic material, called primers, are introduced and bind to the isolated viral genetic material, initiating amplification.

How Rapid Test Works?

Firstly, obtaining Specimen: NP (Nasopharyngeal) Swab.
Extract RNA from Specimen and convert it to DNA.
Amplify by PCR with SARS-CoV-2 specific primers.
Interpret Results: The presence of viral RNA indicates active SARS-CoV-2 infection.

The SARS-CoV-2 RNA (COVID-19), Nucleic acid Amplification Test (NAAT) is a qualitative
multi-target molecular diagnostics test that aids in the diagnosis of COVID-19. This test
should be performed on respiratory specimens collected from people who meet the CDC’s
clinical and/or epidemiological criteria for COVID-19 testing.

Covid Testing in Schaumburg, IL

Rapid Screening Clinic

Rapid Screening is located at 1225 N. Roselle Rd Unit #1227, Schaumburg, IL 60195.

Walk-Ins are welcome, however, you can pre-register to save time. COVID-19 RT-PCR (Nasopharyngeal Swab), Covid Rapid Antigen Test (Result in 15 minutes), COVID-19 Serum Antibody IGM & IGG Tests are available. You can schedule a free RT-PCR test and get results within 24 hours, the next day before 5 pm by provided email.

We are open 7 days from (9:00 am – 6:00 pm).

If you can arrange more than 25 people, On-Site COVID-19 testing is also available.

Free COVID-19 Walk-Up Testing

 Get Results within 24 Hours of the test.
 Real-Time – PCR Test approved by government agencies worldwide.
 Simple Nasal Swab.
 Valid Identification, Contact Information, and insurance information are needed.
 Those who have Insurance will be tested at free of cost.
 On-Site COVID-19 Testing Available
 Bring a Driver’s License or Photo ID and a Copy of Your Insurance Card (not mandatory).

For eligible insured, uninsured, and undocumented patients, Rapid Screening offers a no-cost diagnostic COVID-19 RT-PCR and Rapid Test. Our physician will determine each patient’s eligibility to get a diagnostic COVID-19RT- PCR test based on their responses to
medical screening.

Patients who pay for testing may be eligible for reimbursement from their health insurance provider for all or part of their COVID-19 test. Patients are encouraged to contact their insurance carrier for more information on whether they are qualified for a self-pay COV

Patients should contact their insurance provider for more information on whether or not they are qualified for coverage for a self-pay COVID-19 test and how to apply for reimbursement.

Contact Rapid Screening Covid-19 Testing Center in Schaumburg, IL (Same Parking lot of Office Depot)

Phone (appointments): 847-370-6727 or email:

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Lollapalooza Returning to Chicago This Summer, Organizers Announce

Lollapalooza is returning to Chicago this summer, organizers of the four-day music festival announced Tuesday.

Chicago’s largest music festival will be held at Grant Park at full capacity from July 29 to August 1, organizers said. The lineup will be released at 10 a.m. CT Wednesday, with tickets going on sale at 12 p.m. CT Wednesday.

Organizers said a full COVID-19 vaccination or negative test results within 24 hours before attending the festival will be required for admission, by current public health guidance.

Details on the festival entry process will be available in early July, officials said.

“Here in Chicago, the word ‘Lollapalooza’ has always been synonymous with summer, great music, and four days of unforgettable fun – which made last year’s decision to postpone it all the more difficult,” Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said in a statement.

“Now, less than a year later and armed with a vaccine that is safe, effective, and widely available, we can bring back one of our city’s most iconic summer music festivals,” Lightfoot continued. “I want to thank the Lollapalooza team for working closely with the City to create a reopening strategy that prioritizes safety and can’t wait to see festivalgoers return to Grant Park this summer.”

Chicago is currently in the Bridge Phase of its reopening plan, with increased capacity limits and other changes ahead of a full reopening in Phase 5.

Lightfoot has previously said the city’s goal is a full reopening with no capacity limits by the Fourth of July and has long hinted that this summer would look more like the summer of 2019 than of 2020 in terms of large-scale events like Lollapalooza and other festivals.

Credit / Author: NBC News Chicago

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Is it Covid or the flu? New combo tests can offer an answer

So-called quad tests, now available at thousands of hospitals and clinics, can detect not only the coronavirus but also two types of influenza and the respiratory syncytial virus, or R.S.V.

That might not seem essential given that the United States, like many other countries, witnessed a shocking absence of a flu season this past winter. But as the country begins to reopen, doctors say that flu and other pathogens could make a comeback this fall.

What’s more, even as a growing number of people get vaccinated against Covid, there are still some 40,000 new infections every day in the United States, so testing will still be in demand.

Unlike the antigen tests, the quad test looks for a virus’s genetic material using a polymerase chain reaction, or P.C.R. The P.C.R.-based method is far more accurate than the antigen approach, though P.C.R. sequencing of patient samples used to be more cumbersome and relied on multistep procedures.

Several factors might precipitate the flu’s return in the fall: children returning to school, declining use of masks, and perhaps a lack of recent immune system exposure to the flu. If more people get sick in the fall, they will want to know if it is flu or coronavirus.

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COVID-19 RT-PCR tests for International Travelers

We understand the tight Travel deadlines and provide peace of mind for your next trip. COVID-19 RT-PCR tests for International Travelers.

Get tested with a viral test 3-5 days after travel AND stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel. Even if you test negative, stay home and self-quarantine for the full 7 days. If your test is positive, isolate yourself to protect others from getting infected.

Hawaii COVID-19 Testing Requirements & Test Procedures
Register with the State of Hawaii Safe Travels(link is external) online system as is currently required of all trans-pacific passengers. Pre-travel testing is an alternative to the state’s mandatory 10-day self-quarantine. Travelers may elect to take a pre-travel COVID-19 NAAT from a state of Hawaii Trusted Testing and Travel Partner(link is external) within 72 hours of departing on the last leg of their trip to Hawaii. To avoid the state’s mandatory 10-day self-quarantine, the negative test result from that test must be uploaded before departure of the last leg. Click here for the Trusted Travel Partners list(link is external).

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