COVID-19 Testing & Tracing in Sonoma County

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Testing & Contact Tracing Information

Because 30-40% of people with COVID have no symptoms or only mild ones, they may not realize they can make others sick. Testing helps all of us protect our families, friends, co-workers, and communities and helps us get back to business.

Testing can quickly identify people who are infected and help them keep their families and communities safe from transmission. It also helps us offer support services more quickly to those who need them and can help us identify some of the variants of the COVID virus that spread more rapidly than the original form of the virus.

Free, Convenient, Confidential COVID-19 Testing

You have many options for testing! The links below will take you to some of the trusted testing providers in the County.

Optumserve logo
LHI logo
Department of Health Services logo, County of Sonoma
  • Neighborhood pop-up and community clinic testing: See the Pop-up Testing Calendar for scheduled locations.
  • Appointments and walk-ins are welcome.
  • We provide confidential services regardless of immigration status, no ID required.
  • To make an appointment: Visit our website or call (707) 565-4667.
Curative logo
  • To make an appointment: Visit their website.
  • Registration required.
  • To make an appointment: Visit their website.
  • Registration required.
  • To make an appointment: Visit their website.
  • Requires health insurance for free test.

Thank you for getting tested!

While waiting for your Test Results

Important: Continue to practice physical distancing, wear a face covering when near other people who are not in your household, and wash your hands often.

  • If you do not have symptoms and have not been advised by a medical professional to quarantine at home, you may resume your normal activities.
  • If you are experiencing symptoms, stay home, and keep your distance from others.
    • Follow Home Isolation Instructions and practice physical distancing as you recover, including distancing from other people in your home.
  • If you were identified by a medical professional as a close contact of someone who has tested positive, you should quarantine at home. Even if you do not have symptoms.
    • Follow Home Quarantine Instructions in case you have been infected.
    • If you are an essential worker, talk to your employer to see if you may continue working virtually, or with extra safety precautions.

Have no place to isolate or quarantine? Residents of Sonoma County may be eligible for temporary lodging at a local hotel.

Getting your Test Results

Results from County testing typically come back in 3 days or less. You will be notified at the contact email or phone number that you provide when you take your test. Please remember, when checking your email for results, kindly check your bulk mail folder. If you do not get an email or call after 3 days, call (707) 565-4667 to speak to the COVID-19 Hotline team.

Those with a positive test result will receive a follow-up phone call from a Public Health professional to get information for contact tracing and to direct you to support you may need while you are infected.

Contact Tracing

Contact tracing is an important step in slowing the spread of COVID-19. If you are identified as someone who has been in contact with an infected person, a health worker will contact you.

Contact tracing helps break the chain of infection by identifying potential positive cases, getting them to care, and helping them to isolate from others. The Department of Health Services (DHS) has expanded its system for monitoring cases and contacts by training more health investigators and increasing lab capacity.

Frequently Asked Questions

Search FAQs

Symptoms can take up to 14 days to appear after someone is exposed to a person with COVID-19. During this time, the exposed person (or contact) may spread the disease, even if they do not have any symptoms and feel well. For this reason, contacts cannot leave their homes (or other locations), even to go to work, the grocery store, pharmacy, or for other daily tasks. This is a legally mandated requirement of the County Health Officer.*

Quarantine periods have recently been updated:

  • If you get a negative COVID-19 test 8 days or more after your close contact with a confirmed case, you can end your quarantine 10 days after the last contact. Because you might still be a carrier of COVID-19 for up to 14 days, you must monitor your temperature and symptoms daily. You must also strictly comply with face covering, social distancing, and hygiene requirements, and avoid all gatherings with non-household members until 14-days from the last contact with a confirmed case.
  • If you don’t take a COVID-19 diagnostic test, your quarantine is 14 days from the last date you had close contact (being within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes) with someone diagnosed with COVID-19. It’s important for you to monitor your temperature and symptoms daily. 

Remember, if you begin to have symptoms or are confirmed to have COVID-19 during this time period, you must follow home isolation instructions.

Additional information about quarantine may be found:

*Quarantine and Isolation are health orders that must be followed to reduce the spread of the virus and protect the public’s health.

If you are identified as a contact, you should stay at home and quarantine. If you cannot quarantine safely at home for any reason, the County has a place where you can stay during your quarantine, free of charge. The County of Sonoma has partnered with Sonoma State University to operate an Alternate Care Site (ACS). This is a safe, comfortable place which is open to any person in Sonoma County who needs a place to stay to avoid infecting other household members. People who are not able to keep isolated from others in their home, especially those who live with vulnerable people (adults 65 and older, people with underlying health conditions, etc.), may wish to stay at the ACS. Lodging, meals, and Wi-Fi are provided free of charge.

Help while under quarantine:

Many people are concerned about work and daily activities if they have to be quarantined. The County can help find resources to meet your specific needs, including how to manage loss of income, pay rent, purchase or obtain food, medicines and other essentials while quarantined. Visit the Finance & Housing Assistance page on Socoemergency.org for more information.

You may receive a call from County Public Health staff or Volunteers if you have come into close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.

Public Health staff who contact you will:

  • Protect the identity of the person(s) who may have exposed you to the virus.
  • Identify themselves as being part of the Sonoma County Public Health Department.
  • Notify you that you have been exposed and the timeframe when the exposure likely occurred.
  • Recommend that you get tested and provide information on how and where to obtain a test free-of-charge.
  • Speak with you about how to quarantine and
  • Discuss your needs, answer your questions and connect your with resources.

Public Health staff who contact you will not:

  • Request your social security number or any banking information.
  • Report you to your employer, other governmental agencies or immigration officials.

Your information is strictly confidential and will not be shared with other governmental agencies or immigration officials. You may be assured of this due to our strict compliance with and enforcement of:

  • Health information privacy rules (such as HIPPA laws)
  • Confidentiality agreements (signed by all County staff)
  • Processes and systems for securing and storing confidential information

When may I end my isolation period?

Ending your isolation period depends on specific factors for different situations. Here are the CDC’s recommendations for the following questions and scenarios:

Do I have to get tested?

Your healthcare provider may recommend a test. They will let you know when you can resume being around others based on your test results.

The CDC does not recommend using a test-based strategy for returning to work. Ten days after the symptoms and fever resolve, some people with confirmed COVID-19 will continue to have positive viral tests for several weeks, even though they are otherwise healthy and no longer contagious. This is because you can still have non-contagious dead viruses and viral debris in your system. A symptom-based screening strategy is sufficient to identify when an individual may return to work.

Have you been tested for COVID-19?

Yes. I tested positive for COVID-19 but never developed any symptoms.

If you continue to have no symptoms, you can end your isolation 10 days after your positive viral test for COVID-19.

Yes. I tested positive for COVID-19 and I had symptoms.

You can end your isolation only after you meet these three criteria:

  • 10 days since symptoms first appeared, AND
  • 24 hours with no fever without the use of fever-reducing medications, AND
  • COVID-19 symptoms (cough, shortness of breath, chills, etc.) have improved.

No. I had COVID-19 symptoms but was not tested.

You can end your isolation only after you meet these three criteria:

  • 10 days since symptoms first appeared, AND
  • 24 hours with no fever without the use of fever-reducing medications, AND
  • COVID-19 symptoms (cough, shortness of breath, chills, etc.) have improved.

No, but I have been in close contact with a person who has COVID-19

Anyone who has had close contact with someone with COVID-19 should stay home for 14 days after their last exposure to that person.

No, but I have recently been in close contact with a person who has COVID-19. However, I had COVID-19 in the past 3 months and have recovered.

If you remain without COVID-19 symptoms (for example, cough, shortness of breath, etc.), you do not need to isolate.

What if I was severely ill or have a weakened immune system?

I was severely ill with COVID-19.

People who are severely ill with COVID-19 might need to stay home longer than 10 days and up to 20 days after symptoms first appeared. Talk to your healthcare provider to see if they recommend a test. Your healthcare provider will let you know if you can resume being around other people based on the results of your testing.

I was ill with COVID-19 and have a severely weakened immune system (immunocompromised) due to a health condition or medication.

Persons who are severely immunocompromised may require testing to determine when they can be around others. They might need to stay home longer than 10 days, and up to 20 days after symptoms first appeared. Talk to your healthcare provider to see if they recommend a test. Your healthcare provider will let you know if you can resume being around other people based on the results of your testing.

See CDC website for additional details.

The short answer is yes, an employer can ask you for proof that you are no longer infectious, but having a test after your illness is not the best way to determine this. Many people can continue to have a positive test result for several months after being ill, even though they can no longer infect others. If you have been in isolation for 10 days since your symptoms first appeared or since your positive test, you have not had any fever in the last 24 hours, and you are feeling better, you are very unlikely to be infectious unless you have other health conditions that may prolong your infectiousness. If your employer is asking for proof before you can return to work, the Health Department can help by providing a self-release letter that you can complete, stating you have completed your isolation period and may return to work. You may request a letter by discussing this with your County contact tracer or by calling the COVID-19 Hotline at 707-565-4667.

There are reports of some healthcare providers collecting copays or deductibles for performing a COVID-19 viral test. However:

“Since the passage of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) on March 18, most people should not face costs for the COVID-19 test or associated costs. Starting on March 18 and lasting for the duration of the public health emergency, all forms of public and private insurance, including self-funded plans, must now cover FDA-approved COVID-19 tests and costs associated with diagnostic testing with no cost-sharing, as long as the test is deemed medically appropriate by an attending health care provider. . . The CARES Act requires health plans to reimburse out-of-network COVID-19 test claims at up to the cash price that the provider has posted on a public web site. . . The CARES Act also does not prohibit out-of-network providers from billing patients directly for the COVID-19 test; if that happens, and if the up-front expense is unaffordable, it could deter some patients from getting a test. Otherwise, when providers charge cash up front, it falls to the patient to submit the bill to the health plan for reimbursement” (Source: Kaiser Family Foundation). Discuss this matter directly with your healthcare provider and/or insurance company.

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