Insider’s Guide to COVID Testing at the DECC Posted on January 14, 2022January 21, 2022 by Lucie Duluth is really lucky to have easy access to Minnesota Department of Health COVID testing – some of the best in the nation. And, we’re hoping this blog will make it even easier. Here’s what to do: Get the Latest Info Check the DECC website for the current hours and save yourself from arriving hours before the facility opens. The link is HERE, but if you lose track of it, you get to it on the homepage www.decc.org and clicking MORE in the upper right-hand corner. You’ll see COVID Testing in the dropdown menu. Best Time to Test If you can, avoid the start of the day, lunchtime, and after work. The best walk-in hours are during the after-lunch lull from 1:30 – 3:30. Tuesdays tend to be very busy (as it is the first day of the week testing is open). No Cost to You, whomever you are Good news: You don’t need to pay for testing. You don’t need insurance to be tested (but they’ll take that info if you have it). You don’t need to be from or live in Minnesota or the United States. Heck, you don’t even need an ID! Do bring a smartphone if you have one. Parking your Ride Parking is FREE — just tell the person at the gate that you’re here for testing and roll on in. (There is no longer parking in the back on Harbor Drive.) You can park in the ramp on the third level and take the skywalk (see the map). This is not the AMSOIL one, but rather the skywalk one towards the big, red S.S. William A. Irvin floating museum. Or, come into Door D. That’s the one with the cul-du-sac circle in the front. Once in the lobby, head downstairs to Paulucci Hall. The elevator is over to the far right of the room. Come with a Mask and think S-P-A-C-E If you don’t have one, we’ve got you covered – literally. And please stay on the blue dots on the floor to take the guesswork out of social distancing. The Different Tests – a primer So, what’s the difference between the RAPID and SALIVA tests? The saliva method is a molecular test, also called a PCR test. It is the most sensitive test for COVID-19. While you might get a result within 24 hours, it can take two or more days to get the test results. The rapid or antigen test at the DECC requires a self-administered nasal swab. Results are typically texted to you within approximately 1-3 hours of processing.