Doctor's office
Enter your doctor's name to get office information.
Find labs in your network
Enter your primary care doctor's name to find labs in your network.
Find urgent care centers in your network
Enter your primary care doctor's name to find urgent care centers in your network.
Verify your medical group

Refer to your insurance card or call your insurance provider to determine your medical group.

You can also search for your primary care doctor to find the medical group you and your doctor belong to.

FollowMyHealth®
Driving Directions
Cart
Update Information
Forgot Password

Please enter your e-mail address.

Sharp Health News

Don’t go to the ER for COVID testing — do this instead

Jan. 12, 2022

Mother and daughter getting tested for COVID-19

San Diego emergency rooms are overwhelmed. They are filled with people who have severe illness caused by COVID-19, those experiencing other serious illnesses, individuals who are injured, and people who are simply seeking a COVID-19 test. However, emergency rooms are not meant to serve as COVID testing sites.

According to experts, local hospitals are striving to manage the current surge of COVID-related illness due to the emergence of the highly contagious omicron variant and ongoing delta variant-related illness while also coping with a surge of people seeking COVID tests.

“While we are prepared to care for those with emergency medical needs, we are experiencing some staffing and supply shortages due to the recent surge,” says Josh McCabe, director of emergency services at Sharp Memorial Hospital. “We encourage anyone who is without COVID symptoms or experiencing mild symptoms to look to other testing sources throughout the county, rather than heading to their local ER.”

In doing so, McCabe says, you are likely saving yourself time, preventing your own exposure to illness, freeing up resources for those who are experiencing medical emergencies, and giving local care providers the gift of time and energy they need to care for those most in need.

5 things to consider before heading to an ER:

  1. Due to limited test supplies, local emergency rooms and most urgent care centers can only test people with significant COVID-19 symptoms and those at risk for serious illness, including people with underlying medical conditions (including pregnancy) and those age 65 and older and their caregivers.
     
  2. While COVID-19 tests are free, you are responsible for the cost of any ER or urgent care visit. County COVID testing sites provide free testing and do not require a visit fee.
     
  3. If you do not have COVID symptoms, have not had an exposure, or are under age 65 with no underlying health issues, you can visit a County of San Diego testing location or consult other community resources, such as 211sandiego.org, for testing options instead. At-home tests may be available online or in stores. A positive at-home test should be assumed to be accurate and does not need to be confirmed with a test at a medical facility or COVID-19 testing site.
     
  4. If you need to be tested due to a confirmed exposure, contact your primary care doctor or visit one of the options offered by community and health care partners to be tested sooner. If your primary care provider orders a COVID-19 test, you will receive instructions on where to go. In some cases, you will be instructed to self-test and follow CDC quarantine and isolation guidelines while you wait for — and after receiving — your test results.
     
  5. Some school districts are offering free COVID-19 testing sites for students, teachers and staff. Check with your district for specific testing site details or learn about testing options for the San Diego Unified School District.

Have symptoms? Assume you have COVID.
If you are between ages 16 to 64 and experiencing mild symptoms, assume you have COVID-19 and take all necessary precautions. You can most likely find relief for your symptoms with the use of over-the-counter pain relievers and fever reducers, along with lots of rest and hydration.

Monitor your symptoms and call your doctor if symptoms worsen. Call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room if you are having trouble breathing or persistent pain or pressure in your chest, are unable to stay awake, have bluish face or lips, or are experiencing confusion.

Learn more about COVID-19 vaccination, testing and care resources.

You might also like:

Choose the doctor who's right for you.

At Sharp, we make it easy to find an exceptional doctor — right where you live and work.

All Categories
Contact Sharp HealthCare
Call us

Call 1-800-827-4277 or view our detailed phone directory.

For medical or psychiatric emergencies, call 911 immediately.


Email us

Please do not use this form to convey personal or medical information.

How would you like to be contacted?
Date of birth
Optional


What's This?

These important numbers are located on your billing statement.

Find your Sharp Rees-Stealy account number

Find your SharpCare account number

Find your SharpCare account number
What's GDPR?

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) governs the processing of personal information gathered from individuals while they are in the European Union (EU) and parts of the EEA (European Economic Area, which currently includes Iceland, Lichtenstein and Norway).

We are sorry, but we are unable to process your price estimate if you live or are travelling within the EU or affiliated nations.

What's This?

Many surgery and procedure names sound similar. If possible, please provide the current procedure terminology (CPT) code, which can be found on the order from your doctor.

If you cannot provide the CPT code, please contact your doctor's office for the CPT or a detailed description of services.