PCR Test For Airline Travel
COVID-19 PCR Test
With COVID-19 cases beginning to rise once again in New York City and throughout the country, it’s more important this holiday season to be careful that you aren’t contributing to the possible spread. With Thanksgiving and Christmas around the corner, many travelers are having to get the Coronavirus PCR Test for airline travel from JFK airport.
According to the CDC, whoever needs COVID testing should receive one. This includes those who are in at-risk groups — i.e. those with comorbidities or the elderly — and those who may be traveling soon and need more than a rapid antigen test.
If you’re planning a trip, it’s important to check with both your airline and your destination to understand what testing program they require travelers to follow. Around 72 hours of departure, or much before your day of travel, check again. Read up on airline notices, new regulations and entry requirements before driving to the airport to board domestic or international flights. Some countries require quarantine for 14 days. This 14-day quarantine requirement is mandated in Hawaii.
COVID testing requirements vary. Some airlines like United Airlines don’t mandate preflight testing. Others like Emirates need the PCR testing option completed and you have to have tested negative before you are eligible to fly. This positive or negative RT PCR test often takes 48 hours to 72 hours, sometimes more. It is best to get the test done a few days ahead of your flight schedule.
Air travel in some countries allows for 15 minute testing at the airport. The home test with saliva specimens is not accepted. If the person tests positive the airline passenger traveling will not be allowed to board the flight as they are not fit to fly. Print your boarding pass and your PCR test results and carry them with you prior to travel.
Many US territories — including Alaska and Hawaii — require a negative test result before you can visit. Additionally, many airlines won’t even allow you to board without presenting a negative COVID-19 test result.
Thankfully, Statcare urgent care is helping travelers get to where they need to be safely, whether it is Hong Kong, Dubai, San Francisco or Washington DC. Statcare offers fast, accurate and reliable PCR test for flight passengers and airline crew in New York City.
WHAT IS THE COVID-19 RT-PCR NAAT TEST?
The RT-PCR test is a polymerase chain reaction type of NAAT test (or Nucleic Acid Amplification Test). It can detect RNA from the SARS-COV-2 virus that causes COVID-19. This is different from the 15-minute Rapid Antigen Test and the COVID-19 Antibody Test. Those check for antigens and antibodies against the spike protein of the virus respectively.
The test itself can provide results in as little as 72 hours and is not FDA approved, but has been granted EUA (or Emergency Use Authorization).
This means it can be used to test individuals in specific circumstances, including before you travel to ensure you’re compliant with guidelines and regulations. The results of this COVID-19 PCR test must come from a CLIA Certified laboratory. Luckily, Statcare has partnered with CLIA certified labs and can provide a CLIA certificate.
WHAT IS THE STANDARD COVID-19 PCR TEST?
The standard PCR test, which is available at all 8 Statcare locations throughout NYC, is different from the 72 hour PCR test. While they both involve taking a nasal swab sample, the standard test is EUA approved by the FDA and is considered by many experts to be the most accurate test. Which is why most insurance plans cover this particular test.
It’s important to note that results from a standard coronavirus PCR test can take up to 2-4 business days to become available, but this ultimately depends on the lab’s testing volume. You can get a standard COVID-19 PCR test at any of the Statcare Walk-In Clinic sItes:
● Hicksville, Long Island (near MacArthur Airport)
● Astoria, Queens (near Laguardia Airport)
● Bronx 174th Street
● Bronx Bartow Mall
● Jackson Heights
● Jamaica, Queens (near John F. Kennedy Airport)
● Midtown Manhattan
GET A COVID-19 PCR TEST FOR TRAVEL
Statcare is now offering the 72 hour PCR test for those who are traveling. With that being said, it’s important to understand that not one single test is available that will meet each requirement for all travel guidelines.
With this in mind, you should check with both the airline and the destination you plan on visiting before your trip to see what test they will accept, how quickly you will need to present your test results, and what type of documents will be required.
Almost all major airlines have a mandatory mask-wearing policy while boarding and on the plane itself. Additionally, most airlines require you to present a negative COVID-19 test result before you can board, depending on the airline and the destination you’re visiting.
This is why getting a fast COVID-19 PCR test from Statcare before you travel is recommended in order to ensure you can travel safely and without any issues.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
If you plan on traveling soon, you can get a 72 hour PCR test in New York City at any of our 8 Statcare locations.
Both the standard PCR test and RT-PCR test involve taking nasal swab samples. However, the RT-PCR test checks for RNA from the virus that causes COVID-19 and can produce results in a quicker amount of time (as little as 72 hours).
The standard test is considered more accurate, but you might have to wait 2-4 business days for your results, which might not be feasible if you’re traveling soon and need a negative result quickly.
At Statcare, we accept most major insurance plans, but in order to know if your plan covers the test, we would need to run your insurance and this can only be done at the beginning of your visit. If you would like to know ahead of time, please call the number on the back of your insurance card so a representative may let you know which coronavirus test is covered by your insurance plan.