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WARNING: COVID rapid testing is not rapid!


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I want to give everyone a heads up.  Back on June 17 and 18th, my family of 6 were getting their pre-cruise Covid tests. Our cruise was on June 19th. Most of my family had issues. 

One sister elected to get the a lab test on June 17th, the one that takes 24-48 hours.  Why the full blown test? I don't know why but that is what she thought she needed.  But she started to worry so she went to CVS for a second lab test.  Yes. Another 24-48 hour test.  It was a good thing that she did because she never got the results from the first test. These tests were taken in PA.

My husband and I went to our NH Walgreen for a rapid NAAT test on Friday morning.   We were supposed to get our test results in 2 to 4 hours.  No such luck.  It was only after 12 hours and after our flight to FL that we had received our test results.

My second sister and her husband went to Walgreen in Florida on the morning of June 18th for their rapid NAAT tests.  They never received their results.  They ended up spending $100 EACH for a rapid test at the Royal Caribbean terminal.  The crew wanted my sister to wait for her original results.  Fortunately,  she asked to be given the new tests since she NEVER received the first results.  She was about 2 hours delayed in boarding.  She had an 11 am boarding times.

My brother from Vegas was the only one who did not have a problem. 

Talk about pressure!  I hope our experience is a one off problem and no one else runs into these problems. 

 

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When CVS cancelled our tests for our first cruise back in October and I had to scramble we switched to the EMED home tests for our next 4 cruises. I also always make sure that I have extras in case of issues. Sure hope this testing does go away, it's so much stress.

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We found emed test kits easy to use.  I now recommend them.   I also recommend masking on the ship when you go into an elevator.   My wife got Covid on day 7 although we didn't know until we got home.  We masked most of the time, but you never know about the person sitting next to you when you are eating or drinking.  I tested negative when we got home, so it's hit and miss on the ship.  But to get to the ship, emed is just fine.

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I once, in this forum, suggested/recommended to just go ahead and do the proctored, at home, self tests as it seemed that the going to the local pharmacies seemed to be an issue for some/many folks.  I was, by at least one person in here, chastised for making such a recommendation.  Once again, I highly recommend, for your own sanity, do the proctored, at home, self test, in your PJs.  Embrace the suck and just pay for it and then try to get reimbursed by your insurance company later.  

 

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Everyone should choose whatever method makes them comfortable.

Sorry to hear about all the issues the OP had.

There have been hundreds of reports of people using Walgreens or CVS with no issues whatsoever (including my own experience) & Walgreens remains my preference. Not here to convince anyone it should or should not be theirs though.

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Personally I’ve never had a problem with delayed results the dozen times I used CVS for myself/family.  However I did change to Emed proctored tests once I realized CVS was starting to restrict testing and I felt it might become an insurance issue.  (My paranoia)

any testing that says 24-48 hours is not a rapid test.  The rise in Covid cases often leads to a back up on test results. The proctored at home tests seem to be the way to go.

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3 hours ago, FireFishII said:

I want to give everyone a heads up.  Back on June 17 and 18th, my family of 6 were getting their pre-cruise Covid tests. Our cruise was on June 19th. Most of my family had issues. 

One sister elected to get the a lab test on June 17th, the one that takes 24-48 hours.  Why the full blown test? I don't know why but that is what she thought she needed.  But she started to worry so she went to CVS for a second lab test.  Yes. Another 24-48 hour test.  It was a good thing that she did because she never got the results from the first test. These tests were taken in PA.

My husband and I went to our NH Walgreen for a rapid NAAT test on Friday morning.   We were supposed to get our test results in 2 to 4 hours.  No such luck.  It was only after 12 hours and after our flight to FL that we had received our test results.

My second sister and her husband went to Walgreen in Florida on the morning of June 18th for their rapid NAAT tests.  They never received their results.  They ended up spending $100 EACH for a rapid test at the Royal Caribbean terminal.  The crew wanted my sister to wait for her original results.  Fortunately,  she asked to be given the new tests since she NEVER received the first results.  She was about 2 hours delayed in boarding.  She had an 11 am boarding times.

My brother from Vegas was the only one who did not have a problem. 

Talk about pressure!  I hope our experience is a one off problem and no one else runs into these problems. 

 

Hello Sorry you had to go through that. This exact thing happened to my family member on our most recent sailing. One thing I would suggest in the future if you are taking the Walgreens rapid NAAT, I would call if you don't get the results within 3 hours. Majority of the time the tests are already completed they just haven't sent out the paperwork. So you can ask the pharmacy staff to print out a copy for pick up. This is what my family member did so they were able to have the test results for our cruise.

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Sorry you had a bad experience. I work at a Walgreens that provides PCR testing though labcorp and the rapid ID now NAAT test. There was a computer glitch a week or so a go when automated emails were not being sent correctly. Like the previous poster said, if you ever take a rapid test at a pharmacy and they tell you you should receive your results in 2 hours and you don't get them in the time frame, call them.  They can attempt to resend or they can be printed at any store and picked up. The ID now testing machine sends the emails automatically once it is completed. So as long as the sample is run though the machine there should be a result. The Labcop PCR tests all depended on the lab, which is usually in a different state (Virginia flies their tests to NC) . I would never recommend getting one, unless required. They take so long and the pharmacy has no say in when you get your results back, they are just a collection site.  The issues that we usually run into at our pharmacy are email addresses not entered in correctly or names or dates of birth are not correct and people signing up for PCR tests and they need their results in a time frame that may not occur. 

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9 hours ago, HillaryG said:

There was a computer glitch a week or so a go when automated emails were not being sent correctly. Like the previous poster said, if you ever take a rapid test at a pharmacy and they tell you you should receive your results in 2 hours and you don't get them in the time frame, call them.  They can attempt to resend or they can be printed at any store and picked up.

This happened to us twice this year- first time in April, my husband and I took our tests and the same time; he got his results back in less than an hour and mine never came back. Called the Walgreens and they said I could pick up a physical copy of my results. We were lucky the Walgreens is just down the street from us. The second time was a few weeks ago, 3 of us tested at the same time. My daughter and I both got our results back in about an hour, but nothing for my husband. He called the next morning and finally got a hold of someone who told him he didn't get results because his test was inconclusive. Why he didn't get an email with that information too is weird. Then he went back to retest, and after that a few hours, still didn't get an email with results. So he called and we were able to pick up the physical copy. 

All this to say, testing was free (unlike the proctored at-home tests), but be prepared for some possible glitches! Have a backup plan just in case, and test as early as possible to give you time to pick up results or retest!

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Emed at-home proctored tests are fast, reliable and easy.

I remember attempting to make an appointment last year at several pharmacies in the Memphis area prior to the first cruise post-pandemic only to run into glitches in the online reservation systems.

The Emed testing process is a game-changer for our family. 

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Walgreens had an issue with their system on June 16th. My son tested and his results still havent come through "via email" despite the automated response telling us repeatedly that it would resend them.

Eventually spoke to a human who said their email system had crapped out for the day and to go to the nearest Walgreens and request a reprint.

Worth knowing for the future that apparently ANY Walgreens can print out the results for you if you ask.

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Can anyone share how long the expiration dates are on the Emed Home Test? I'm considering purchasing the 6 pack, so that my wife and I can use 2 for our upcoming July 18th cruise, and then saving the other 4 our the entire family when we cruise again in January of 23.

Also, can the telehealth portion be done with an iPhone? We plan to fly into LA 2 days before departure to see what we can see in LA, so I'm thinking Emed is probably our best option for testing. 

Anyone have any "Must See" recommendations for first time LA travelers?

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23 minutes ago, Vincent said:

Can anyone share how long the expiration dates are on the Emed Home Test? I'm considering purchasing the 6 pack, so that my wife and I can use 2 for our upcoming July 18th cruise, and then saving the other 4 our the entire family when we cruise again in January of 23.

Also, can the telehealth portion be done with an iPhone? We plan to fly into LA 2 days before departure to see what we can see in LA, so I'm thinking Emed is probably our best option for testing. 

Anyone have any "Must See" recommendations for first time LA travelers?

eMed tests should have at least a 6-month timeline (more likely 10 months or so) plus the CDC has authorized an extension beyond the printed expiration date. Yes, the teleheath can be done over an iPhone without a problem other than getting the phone somewhere the proctor can follow along (a pain if you're doing it by yourself but easy if you have someone to hold the phone for you). 

Check the local Walgreens as an option as well. We have eMed backups for in case we can't get a test at a local Walgreens.

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38 minutes ago, Vincent said:

Can anyone share how long the expiration dates are on the Emed Home Test? I'm considering purchasing the 6 pack, so that my wife and I can use 2 for our upcoming July 18th cruise, and then saving the other 4 our the entire family when we cruise again in January of 23.

Also, can the telehealth portion be done with an iPhone? We plan to fly into LA 2 days before departure to see what we can see in LA, so I'm thinking Emed is probably our best option for testing. 

Anyone have any "Must See" recommendations for first time LA travelers?

I purchased test at the end of Dec 2021 for some Jan 2022 cruises. I brought a 3pk and they expired Nov of 2022. Since I only need to use 1, it was a S2S2S and RCG tested me, I will be able to use it for my Sept cruise. If you get them, they shouldn't expire until March or April of 2023

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Public Service Notification:
Went on to our local Walgreens site (in NH)to book our test for July 8th and noticed two changes from April

1) Appointments aviabile only 4 days out, down from 7

2) a pop-up notice stating it may not be free anymore, it depends on ....  unfortunately ... is not clearly defined.  There is also no price posted that I could find.   Conclusion:  either they are still free but trying to cut down on testing volume, or I'm going to find out the fee after the fact.

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1 hour ago, Qeyton Dude said:

Public Service Notification:
Went on to our local Walgreens site (in NH)to book our test for July 8th and noticed two changes from April

1) Appointments aviabile only 4 days out, down from 7

2) a pop-up notice stating it may not be free anymore, it depends on ....  unfortunately ... is not clearly defined.  There is also no price posted that I could find.   Conclusion:  either they are still free but trying to cut down on testing volume, or I'm going to find out the fee after the fact.

1. They moved to 3 days out (4 if you're counting today) last week. They did this once before and then went back to 7.

2. The price reported elsewhere is $128.99 and it depends on how you answer the questions. I posted that 2nd part about the q's earlier in this thread. You will know after you answer the questions if you are going to be charged or not.

They are still free but not for healthy people using them solely for travel. Read between the lines.

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1 hour ago, Johar4469 said:

Is it hard to make a account to do the at home test

I've done two, eMed/Navica and the other iHealth.  iHealth doesn't do proctored testing anymore.  But, both were super easy.  

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