Testing for COVID-19 is available for everyone who lives or works in San Mateo County regardless of symptoms. San Mateo County has recently increased testing capacity by almost 5,000 tests per week. New appointments and testing locations are now available.
The COVID-19 diagnostic test is safe, easy and at no-cost to you regardless of where you receive it (insurance may be billed when available). This test will not indicate if you previously had COVID-19.
Who Can Get Tested?
Adults age 18 and over can schedule a test Tuesdays through Saturdays at the San Mateo County Event Center or at a rotating series of neighborhood locations. Days and times are listed below.
If you are interested in being tested, you may also contact your health care provider – just as you would with any other health concern. One local option is Stanford Health Care, which offers testing for both Stanford patients and the public.
To find additional local testing sites, visit the state’s testing site locator. Patients with health insurance should check whether the cost of the test can be covered by insurance.
Note: Testing is now available for children ages 5 to 17. Schedule an appointment and learn more.
For Adults: How to Make an Appointment
It's easy: visit the County’s testing partner, Project Baseline, to find appoinments up to seven days in advance at the Event Center or at a mobile site. Short videos below explain the procedure.
If you don't have access to the internet, an on-site volunteer may be able to help you register and get tested. Remember to bring your photo ID and the reference ID from your confirmation email to your appointment.
At the Event Center
Testing is available from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays at the San Mateo County Event Center at no-cost and available to anyone over 18. To see testing availability and make an appointment, visit Project Baseline.
At a Mobile Testing Site
Testing at sites served by a mobile operation is available to anyone over 18 who lives or works in San Mateo County. See the schedule below and, to find the address and make an appointment, visit Project Baseline. Remember: If you don't have access to the internet, an on-site volunteer may be able to help you register and get tested.
|Wednesday, Oct. 28||San Bruno||8 am to 3 pm|
|Thursday, Oct. 29||North Fair Oaks - Stanford||8 am to 3 pm|
|Friday, Oct. 30||North Fair Oaks - Stanford||8 am to 3 pm|
|Monday, Nov. 2||Daly City||9 am to 4 pm|
|Tuesday, Nov. 3||San Bruno||9 am to 3 pm|
|Wednesday, Nov. 4||Daly City||9 am to 4 pm|
|Thursday, Nov. 5||East Palo Alto||8 am to 3 pm|
|Friday, Nov. 6||East Palo Alto||8 am to 3 pm|
Note: Dates and times are subject to change on short notice due to weather and other factors.
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 is a severe respiratory syndrome and infectious disease. Its symptoms include but are not limited to fever, cough, shortness of breath, loss of taste or smell. However, not all people have symptoms when they have COVID-19.
A Note on Site-Specific Testing
Working with cities and local partners, the County is also providing testing to local communities at pop-up neighborhood testing sites in priority locations as identified by Public Health. Some residents may receive information about the availability of such sites through targeted outreach in their neighborhoods and communities.
After a Test: What’s Next?
Most results are returned in 72 hours.
If your first COVID test is negative, you should get tested again if you:
- Are concerned about possible exposure
- Have spent time with people outside your household
- Have had exposure to someone with confirmed or possible COVID-19
- Have symptoms
- Work in a congregate setting like a nursing home or shelter are planning to visit someone at high risk for severe COVID-19 illness
If you test positive for COVID-19, a contact tracer with San Mateo County Health will contact you. Certain support services may be available for those who qualify.
If you do test positive, view home isolation instructions in multiple languages.
Why is COVID-19 testing important?
The results of your COVID-19 test, along with other information, can help you and your health care provider make informed decisions about your care.
- Being tested for COVID-19 may help limit the spread of COVID-19 to your family and others in your community.
- Widespread testing also helps inform the public health response, allowing health care professionals to quickly discover patterns and respond to outbreaks.
- Testing also plays a key role in determining what sectors of the economy are permitted to open – and help all of us get back to work, to school and to enjoy everyday life safely.
- Widespread testing along with a low rate of positive tests helps our community comeback from COVID-19.
See the County’s Testing Plan to learn more about the County’s priorities.