Frequently Asked Questions

Pooled testing is a form of community surveillance covid-19 testing. Rather than testing each person individually, samples are combined (either by you, with the Standard Nasal, or at the lab, with the Auto Nasal) and produce one group result.

Standard Nasal: The person who registered the sample collection tube will receive an email notification when the results are available. The email will have instructions on how to access the results.

Auto Nasal: The organization administrator will access the results through the Veritas Results Portal. On average results will be available within 24 hrs of being received at the lab. If all results are negative the administrator will NOT receive an email notification that results are ready. If there is a positive pool, the administrator and all participants in the positive pool WILL receive an email notification letting them know a positive pool has been detected. The lab will then process individual tests for everyone in the positive pool.

*Note that pooled testing results cannot be used to satisfy requirements for proof of an individual negative results (e.g.: negative result needed for travel).

Standard Nasal: In case of a positive result, the person who registered the test will receive notification, and should alert all members of the pool to be individually tested. Individual Covid-19 tests are available at CIC Health testing locations as well as area pharmacies, your primary care physician or other testing centers near you.

Auto Nasal: In the case of a positive pool, the lab will automatically perform an individual PCR test on everyone in the positive pool. The organization administrator will receive email notification that there has been a positive pool for their organization. Once the individual results are processed - on average within 24 hrs after the pool test results - they will be available to the administrator on the organization’s results portal. Individual participants in the positive pool will also receive an email notification that they have been part of the positive pool. They will be given instructions to register with the results portal and view their individual test results.

Pooled tests are exceptionally helpful for two particular groups of people. (1) Those that are presumed negative and (2) groups that would have direct contact with other members of the pool, so in case of a positive, they would likely have to all seek individual test results anyway. We see this often in schools, office settings, shift workers, among family or household members, etc.

You must send the samples back to the lab on the same day you collect the samples. To ensure proper lab processing time only collect and send samples Monday through Thursday, and ensure you drop off your samples before the day’s final pick-up window for UPS Next-Day Air Shipments. This is crucial so that the sample is still viable for testing.

*Please check the lab holiday schedule for upcoming interruptions

Standard Nasal: One person will register the tube online (they don’t have to be part of the sample). It is important for the registrant to keep track of who is in which pool in order to accurately return results to members of the pool. When you register a tube online it has a barcode and you can assign a custom memo for each barcode. This is helpful so you can keep track of the test results, especially if you have a large group. If you are regularly testing a group bigger than 10 people (i.e. multiple collection tubes per test run) we suggest you use a spreadsheet template or similar to help keep track of the test participants, collection pools and results. The registrant will receive an email when the results are available, usually within 24hrs of when the sample is returned to CIC Health.

Auto Nasal: The person ordering the kits will receive an email to sign up and receive access to a Veritas Genetics Results Portal. Following portal creation, the admin will receive an email template to share with testers so they can create their own profiles. Each tester can then take their individual pre-packaged testing supplies, register their sample, and follow instructions for swabbing. The admin should collect all of the samples and mail them back as instructed on the CIC Health Testing Checklist. Once the samples arrive at the lab, the pool result will appear on the portal within 24hrs on average. If the pool is positive, the administrator will receive a notification, and the lab will trigger an automatic re-test of the samples in the pool, but individually. Individual results for the pool will be delivered to all participants within 24hrs on average, after the pool test result.

Included in your test kit are all the supplies you need to properly package and ship the samples back to the lab. You will place the collection tube(s) in a provided biohazard bag and then place the bag in the original box that carried the kit supplies (minus the wrapper you teared off). The box should be appropriately pre-labeled with a Next Day Air label + a UN3373 Biological Sample label. This packaging meets the requirements for shipping COVID-19 samples.

Standard Nasal: Typically within 24hrs of when the samples reach the lab you will receive an email notifying you the results are available.

Auto Nasal: After receipt at the lab, you can expect to find your pool results within 24hrs. Note that you will not receive notification for negative pools and need to check the portal.

*Note that the 24hr average does not factor in the shipping time back to the lab.

No. The laboratories that will process our tests will not read, analyze, or store DNA information at all as part of this test.

It’s simple and takes about a minute or less. Participants test themselves by rotating a swab in a circular path against the nasal of both nostrils. For the Auto Pooled Test, the registration process might take a minute or so longer. Testers do not need to register with the Standard Pooled Test.

Based on guidance from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, participants in grades 2 and above can self-administer pooled testing swabs. Medical professionals are not required to assist those who cannot swab themselves.

Each kit includes just one return label, therefore should be at maximum for one testing event/instance. Please calculate accordingly, and let us know if you have any questions.

Auto Pooled Test samples may NOT be dropped off.

Standard Pooled Test samples may be dropped off 24/7 at 320 Charles St. Cambridge, MA. Please be sure to bring your samples in the packaging as if it were being shipped via UPS (in the brown, pre-labeled box). Please note, we have a separate delivery rack from the rest of the samples destined for the lab. You will find it tucked to the right of the security desk labeled with "CIC Health Sample Drop Off".

*Please check the lab holiday schedule for upcoming interruptions

All sales are final. Purchases may not be returned or refunded.