Monday, October 2, 2023

How Much Is A Flu Test

Must read

Can The Flu Be Prevented

How a Rapid Flu Test Is Performed: Sofia Influenza A & B

You can help prevent the flu by getting the flu vaccine every year. It’s best to get the vaccine as soon as it’s available.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone 6 months old and older should get a flu vaccine. The vaccine is especially important for people who are at higher risk of problems from the flu, including:

  • Young children.
  • Adults ages 50 and older.
  • Adults and children who have long-term health problems or an impaired immune system.
  • Women who will be pregnant during the flu season.

The flu vaccine is also important for health care workers and anyone who lives or works with a person who is at higher risk of problems from the flu.

The vaccine usually prevents most cases of the flu. But even if you do get the flu after you’ve had the vaccine, your symptoms will be milder and you’ll have less chance of problems from the flu. You cannot get the flu from the flu vaccine.

Lets Talk About Philly Health Costs

Join the Inquirer’s Sarah Gantz and 6ABC Action News reporter Nydia Han at 1 p.m. April 18 on Facebook Live for a conversation about health-care costs, and the main issues our readers are facing. Just “like” or 6ABC on Facebook, and you’ll get an alert when the program begins. Can’t be there? Look for a recording on both pages later.

Puritan Swabs Can Be Used For Combined Flu And Covid Testing

As one of only two suppliers worldwide who produce the specialized swabs CDC recommends for nasopharyngeal sample collection, Puritan Medical has been at the epicenter of COVID-19 testing. Solutions like our HydraFlock and PurFlock sterile ultrafine flock swabs afford health care providers added certainty in diagnosing patients presenting with these common symptoms by providing better cell yield in the specimen compared to alternative solutions.

As COVID-19 testing in particular continues to evolve, Puritan continues to update its testing resources to connect healthcare providers with the best solutions for patient health and safety.

With the 2022-2023 flu season underway, combined flu and COVID-19 testing may prove critical in relieving some of the pressure and provide quick, accurate information to patients, practitioners and the community at large.

Looking for more? Check out these printable PDFs on how to collect a nasal and nasopharyngeal specimen.

You May Like: High Dose Flu Vaccine Who Should Get It

Confidence In Your Results With The Gold Standard Pcr Test

Detects Known Variants

Our PCR Test detects known SARS-CoV-2 Variants, including Delta and Omicron*

Gold Standard

PCR tests are considered a gold standard by the CDC** for diagnosing COVID-19 because of their sensitivity and specificity

60M+ PCR Tests Performed

Labcorp has performed over 60 million COVID-19 tests since March 2020

Trusted by Doctors

Our PCR test is the same test used by doctors & hospitals to detect COVID-19, FluA, FluB, and RSV

If your test is positive for COVID-19 or flu, you may be contacted by a trusted third-party physician network to discuss next steps.

& nbsp

Why Do You Need It

BinaxNOW Influenza A& B Test Kit

When your doctor finds the flu virus, they can give you antiviral drugs early on. This is when they work best. If you get diagnosed early — within 48 hours after symptoms show up — these drugs can ease your symptoms and shorten the illness by a day or so. After the first 2 days, though, these meds wonât do much for you.

A flu test can also help your doctor rule out giving you antibiotics. Those donât work against viral infections like the flu.

You May Like: Can You Take Expired Cold And Flu Medicine

Where To Receive Treatment For The Flu

The board-certified doctors and physicians at Priority Care can diagnose and treat the flu quickly to help you feel better fast. Stop into one of the clinics below or learn more about the one closest to you.

Once an urgent care physician at Priority Care has started you on a treatment plan, our team can contact your primary care physician or a specialist if needed. You can prevent the flu and the spread of the flu by getting a yearly flu shot.

  • White Marsh Clinic

    5282 Campbell Blvd Suite INottingham, MD 21236

  • 550 Ritchie Hwy Suite KSeverna Park, MD 21146

Benefits And Downsides Of At

To decide if at-home flu testing is a good fit for your needs, its important to consider its potential positives and negatives.

The main possible benefits of at-home flu testing include:

  • Convenience: An at-home test can be ordered online and performed at home at your convenience without needing to make an appointment or go to a medical office.
  • Testing in isolation: If you are worried about being contagious with the flu, at-home testing allows you to get tested while avoiding contact with other people.
  • Option to test for flu and COVID-19: The current at-home test kit that is available tests for both the flu and COVID-19 with one sample.
  • Transparent pricing: Most at-home influenza testing involves a single, all-inclusive price that is clearly shown before making your payment.

Some of the main possible downsides of at-home flu testing include:

  • Potential sample collection errors: While test kits include detailed instructions, there is the potential for an invalid or inaccurate result if the test sample is not collected properly.
  • Testing may not affect your medical care: In many cases, the results of an at-home flu test will not change the next steps in your care and recovery.
  • Out-of-pocket cost: Insurance often does not cover at-home flu testing, requiring you to personally pay for the full cost of the test kit.
  • Time delay on self-collection tests: Since the test requires sending your sample to a lab, it can take several days before you receive a result.

Recommended Reading: Where Did The Flu Go

How Do They Decide What Strains Are In The Vaccine Each Year

Each year, the flu vaccine, containing inactivated virus, is targeted to protect against the expected strains, based on the observations and experience of healthcare practitioners and scientists. Healthcare providers and researchers carefully track the influenza virus circulating worldwide and try to anticipate the strain that will eventually appear locally the next season.

As influenza travels through communities around the world, it undergoes spontaneous changes that allow it to evade the protective antibodies formed from previous infections and vaccinations. The amount of “antigenic drift” varies from year to year. Bigger antigenic drifts, known as “antigenic shifts,” result in more severe illnesses since more people will be susceptible to the virus.

Sometimes the flu strain will have significant antigenic drift during the season so that the virus will appear slightly different to the body’s immune system, decreasing the effectiveness of the vaccine’s protection. Or, the flu that predominates may end up being an unexpected strain, not the ones that the vaccine was developed to protect against.

Usually, in these cases, the vaccination will at least lessen the severity of the infection. In individual high-risk patients , healthcare practitioners may bolster the protection by prescribing antiviral treatments before the person gets sick to provide short-term protection while influenza moves through the community.

How Well Can Rapid Tests Detect Flu

Gravitas: Wuhan coronavirus, The cost of a Covid-19 test

During a flu outbreak, a positive rapid flu test is likely to indicate flu virus infection. However, rapid tests vary in their ability to detect flu viruses, depending on the type of rapid test used, and on the type of flu viruses circulating. Also, rapid tests appear to be better at detecting flu in children than in adults. This variation in ability to detect viruses can result in some people who are infected with flu having a negative rapid test result. This situation is called a false negative test result. Despite a negative rapid test result, your health care provider may diagnose you with flu based on your symptoms and their clinical judgment.

Read Also: Why Should I Get My Flu Shot

Questions For Your Doctor After At

If youve recently taken an at-home flu test, the following questions may be useful to discuss with your doctor:

  • How do you interpret my test result?
  • Do you think the at-home test that I took was accurate?
  • Should I have any follow-up testing?
  • Are any treatments or other measures appropriate given my symptoms and test result?

What Is The Flu

Influenza, commonly known as the flu, is an extremely contagious respiratory illness. The influenza virus actually stands for a group of related viruses. Flu symptoms include fever, chills, sore throat, runny nose, body aches, headache, and fatigue. Symptoms last through the duration of the fluseven days or longer.

Though people can fall ill with the flu any time of year, cases peak during flu season, a time during the winter and early spring. Many medical professionals recommend that patients get a flu shot before flu season starts, to lessen the chances of falling ill. You can get a flu shot quickly and easily at FastMed.

Recommended Reading: Type 1 Diabetes And The Flu

What Kinds Of Flu Tests Are There

A number of tests are available to detect flu viruses in respiratory specimens. The most common are called rapid influenza diagnostic tests . RIDTs work by detecting the parts of the virus that stimulate an immune response. These tests can provide results within approximately 10-15 minutes but may not be as accurate as other flu tests. Therefore, you could still have flu, even though your rapid test result is negative. Other flu tests called rapid molecular assays detect genetic material of the flu virus. Rapid molecular assays produce results in 15-20 minutes and are more accurate than RIDTs.

In addition to RIDTs and rapid molecular assays, there are several more accurate flu tests available that must be performed in specialized laboratories, such as hospital and public health laboratories. These tests include reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction , viral culture, and immunofluorescence assays. All of these tests require that a health care provider swipe the inside of your nose or the back of your throat with a swab and then send the swab for testing. Results may take one to several hours.

Flu Test Versus Covid 19 Test

ImmunoCard STAT!® FLU A& B

The biggest benefit of the multiplex test is that through rapid diagnosis there is no delay in providing appropriate treatment. Given the overlap in symptoms between influenza and COVID-19, this is critical. While symptoms can range in severity for both COVID-19 and flu, both illnesses share many common symptoms.


You May Like: Is The Flu Nasal Spray As Effective As The Shot

How Do I Know If I Have Flu

Your respiratory illness might be influenza if you have fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and/or fatigue. Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children. People may be sick with flu and have respiratory symptoms without a fever. Flu viruses usually cause the most illness during the colder months of the year. However, flu can also occur outside of the typical flu season. In addition, other viruses can also cause respiratory illness similar to flu. So, it is impossible to tell for sure if you have flu based on symptoms alone. If your doctor needs to know for sure whether you are sick with flu, there are laboratory tests that can be done.

When Do I Need A Flu Test

If you have flu-like symptoms or are concerned about possibly having the flu, talk to your healthcare provider. Most people dont need a flu test and recover from the flu within a week or two, but a number of factors can contribute to your provider wanting you to get a flu test.

Symptoms of the flu include:

  • Sudden onset of moderate to high fever.
  • Being over the age of 65 or under the age of 5.
  • Being in the hospital for treatment for another condition.

You may also need to take a flu test so that public health officials or providers can figure out whether an outbreak of respiratory illness in a community, such as a school or nursing home, has been caused by the flu.

Public health officials and providers may also use specialized flu tests to identify the type of flu virus thats causing infections.

Read Also: Which Flu Vaccine Should I Get

When Should I Call My Healthcare Provider About My Flu Test

If you have any questions about your flu test, reach out to your provider. It may be helpful to ask the following questions:

  • How do you interpret my test result?
  • Do you think my test result is accurate?
  • Should I have any follow-up testing?
  • Given my symptoms and result, are there any treatment options or medications you recommend?

When Should You Call Your Doctor

COVID-19 vaccine, contact tracing & testing: How the UK is fighting coronavirus

911 or other emergency services if:

  • You are having trouble breathing, or you feel very short of breath.
  • You have a severe headache or stiff neck and are confused or having trouble staying awake.
  • You have an extremely high fever.
  • Your fever lasts longer than 3 days.
  • Your child is 3 months of age or younger and has a fever of 100.4°F or higher.
  • Your cough lasts more than 7 to 10 days after other symptoms are gone.
  • You are coughing up yellow, green, rust-colored, or bloody mucus.
  • You are finding it harder and harder to breathe.
  • Wheezing develops.
  • New pain develops or pain narrows to one area, such as an ear, the throat, the chest, or the sinuses.
  • Symptoms don’t go away, even with home treatment.
  • Symptoms become more severe or frequent.

Don’t Miss: Can You Get Tested For Flu

The Importance Of Fast Results For Effective Treatment

Not everyone will seek treatment after testing positive for COVID or the flu. But if you want treatment, timing is important.

Flu treatment works best when started within 2 days of feeling symptoms. For COVID, treatment works best when started within 5 days.

Knowing early, “Is it COVID or flu?” matters. With Lucira, avoid appointments wait times, and lab delays. Get 99% accurate results at home in 30 minutes or less and feel better, faster.

What Will My Results Tell Me

Your test results will detect whether you are infected with SARS-CoV-2, Influenza A, Influenza B and/or RSV. If your results are positive for one of more of the viruses, it is important to limit your exposure to other people and continue to monitor your symptoms. If your results are negative, the viruses were not detected in the sample you provided. However, it is important to note that the viruses may not be detected by the test in early stages of infection. Furthermore, the viruses may not be detected if the sample is not collected as directed. If you have reason to believe you have been exposed, it is important to follow up with a healthcare provider for further evaluation, get re-tested, and follow isolation or quarantine precautions as recommended. For further information on isolation and quarantine guidelines,

After receiving your results, you will have the opportunity to speak with a licensed healthcare provider who can answer any questions you may have about your test results and help determine next steps in care.

Also Check: Flu Type A And B

Where Can You Get A Flu Tests

Flu tests are available at most doctors offices, urgent care settings, and hospitals.

Rapid flu tests are usually less costly than laboratory-based tests. According to Beckers Hospital Review, rapid tests cost about $5 to $10, while a laboratory test can cost $200 or more.

You may wish to contact a facility where youre seeking testing to ensure they have flu tests available, especially if youre in flu season, which usually takes place in the late fall to winter.

What Do The Results Of A Flu Test Mean

How to tell if your symptoms are a cold, flu, Covid or the Kent variant
  • Positive result: A positive result means that the test detected influenza viral antigen or RNA.
  • Negative result: A negative result means that the test didnt detect any influenza viral antigen or RNA.
  • Invalid result: If your test reveals an invalid result, it means there was an error in the testing. This could mean an issue with the sample collection or the test itself. Youll need to take another test.

You May Like: Severe Daytime Cold And Flu Medicine

What Is Influenza A & B Testing

Influenza A & B tests are rapid diagnostic tests that screen for influenza virus infection. In most cases, your Healthcare Clinic provider can diagnosis the flu based on symptoms, especially when these symptoms occur during the peak flu season. But sometimes he or she may want to perform an influenza rapid diagnostic test to be sure the influenza virus, not another health problem, is responsible for your symptoms.

To conduct the test, we will collect a specimen from the back of your nose or throat with a cotton-tipped swab.

The rapid diagnostic flu test usually provides results within 15 minutes.

This test is available at Healthcare Clinic locations for patients 18 months and older.

If you believe you have a medical emergency, please call 911.

The Vaccines For Children Program

helps provide vaccines to children whose parents or guardians may not afford them. To qualify for this federally funded program, a child must be under 19 years old and be any of the following:

  • Without health insurance
  • American Indian

Vaccines provided by VFC are free, but there may be an administration or office-visit fee. Contact your local VFC coordinator to find doctors who work with the program. Or, you can visit a public health clinic, federally qualified health center, or rural health clinic to get vaccines through VFC.

Also Check: Best Medicine For Flu And Body Aches

More articles

Popular Articles