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​When You Should Be Tested

Mask up. Wash up. Sleeve up, Get the vaccine.

Update on Free At-Home COVID-19 Test Kits

The Biden Administration will be delivering free at-home test kits through the mail to all Americans who place an order. Read the fact sheet from the federal government and place your order online or by phone at 1-800-232-0233.

Who Should be Tested?

COVID-19 testing is recommended for people around 5 days after exposure who have...

  • Symptoms of COVID-19. (For information about symptoms, visit our Prevention and Symptoms page.)
  • Had close contact with someone who has COVID-19. (For information about close contacts, visit our Contact Tracing page.)
  • Have taken part in activities that put them at higher risk for COVID-19.
  • Been referred for testing by healthcare provider or health department.

Call your healthcare provider to find out if you should be tested. If you do not have a health care provider and need help finding one, visit the MCPH Community Resource Guide page for information. You may also the MCPH hotline at 980-314-9400.

More guidance on testing is available from the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services (NC DHHS).

Mecklenburg County Public Health (MCPH) will continue to work with our partners to ensure COVID-19 screening and testing are available to all who need it in our community, regardless of insurance coverage. The table below lists testing sites in Mecklenburg County that offer tests to community members free of charge. 

Where Do I Go To Get Tested?

Unless you are in need of immediate medical attention, avoid going to an emergency department to get tested for COVID-19. Emergency departments are currently very busy with COVID-19-positive patients who need immediate care in addition to people who have medical emergencies unrelated to COVID-19.

Local in-person testing sites are listed in the table below. The locations and hours are subject to change; please visit the providers' websites for up-to-date information. Click on the provider links in the left column to learn more and make an appointment (preregistration is preferred, but walk-ins are always welcome). Most locations offer free tests without proof of identification, but some locations may charge a fee or ask for identification. Be sure to contact your local testing place before arriving to find out what you need to bring.

For additional COVID-19 testing options available in our community, please visit No-Cost Community Testing Events and Find My Testing Place from NC DHHS. Some locations, like urgent care facilities, may charge a fee or require your personal information. Be sure to ask when you call.

​MAKO Medical


​14523 Carowinds Blvd, Charlotte, NC 28273

Mon - Sat: 8am - 4pm

​Park Expo Center 

​2500 E Independence Blvd, Charlotte, NC 28205

​Mon - Fri: 8am - 4pm

​First Baptist Church of Cornelius 

​21007 Catawba Ave, Cornelius, NC 28031

Mon, Tues, Thurs: 9am - 4pm

​R.C. Bradford Park 

​17005 Davidson-Concord Rd, Huntersville, NC 28078

Mon - Fri: 10am - 4pm

StarMed Healthcare

​ ​

​zMAX Dragway

​6570 Bruton Smith Blvd, Concord, NC 28027

​Noon - 4pm ONLY ON:

  • Saturday, Jan 29
  • Monday, Jan 31
  • Tuesday, Feb 1
  • Wednesday, Feb 2
  • Thursday, Feb 3
  • Monday, Feb 7
  • Tuesday, Feb 8
  • Wednesday, Feb 9
  • Thursday, Feb 10
  • Saturday, Feb 12
  • Monday, Feb 14
  • Wednesday, Feb 16
  • Thursday, Feb 17
  • Saturday, Feb 19
  • Monday, Feb 21
  • Wednesday, Feb 23
  • Monday, Feb 28

​StarMed – Freemore
​4001 Tuckaseegee Rd, Charlotte, NC 28208
Mon - Thurs: 9am - 6pm
Fri: 10am - 6pm
Sat & Sun: 10am - 4pm
​StarMed – Eastland
​5344-B Central Ave, Charlotte, NC 28212
(Testing located across the street, in the parking lot of the old Eastland Mall)
Mon - Thurs: 9am - 6pm
Fri: 10am - 6pm
Sat & Sun: 10am - 4pm
​Mecklenburg County Public Health – Northwest
​2845 Beatties Ford Rd, Charlotte, NC 28216
​Mon - Fri: 10am - 4pm
​Uptown Charlotte
​S Tryon St & E 4th St, Charlotte, 28281
Daily: 9am - 6pm
Cinemark 10
​9508 Northeast Ct, Matthews, NC 28105
​Mon - Fri: 9am - 3pm
CATS Light Rail, Archdale Station 
​​6230 South Blvd, Charlotte, NC 28217
​Mon-Fri: 9am - 6pm
Sat: 9am - 3pm
​Greater Bethel AME Church
​5232 The Plaza, Charlotte, NC 28215
Mon - Fri: 10am - 4pm​
Grace Zion AME Church
​3722 David Cox Rd, Charlotte, NC 28269
Mon - Fri: 10am - 4pm
​Northside Baptist Church
​5295 The Roman Rd, Charlotte, NC 28262
Mon - Fri: 10am - 4pm
Garinger High School
​1100 Eastway Dr, Charlotte, NC 28205
Mon - Fri: 8am - 2pm
Waddell Virtual Academy
​7030 Nations Ford Rd, Charlotte, NC 28217
Mon - Fri: 10am - 3pm
James Martin Middle School
​7800 IBM Dr, Charlotte, NC 28262
Mon - Fri: 10am - 3pm
​Rocky River High School
​10505 Clear Creek Commerce Dr, Mint Hill, NC 28227
Mon - Fri: 9am - 3pm
Barnette Elementary School
​13659 Beatties Ford Rd, Huntersville, NC 28078
Mon - Fri: 9am - 1pm
Novant Health
​Novant Health
​125 Baldwin Ave, Charlotte, NC 28204
Mon, Wed, Fri: 7am - 3pm
​Atrium Health
​Atrium Health
​4222 Beam Rd, Charlotte, NC 28217
​Mon - Fri: 11am - 4pm
United Providers of Health

​Matthews United Methodist Church
​​801 S Trade St, Matthews, NC 28105
​Wed, Thurs, Fri: noon - 5pm
​​MSC Industrial Supply Co.
​525 Harbour Place Dr, Davidson, NC, 28036
​Mon, Tue, Sat: 10am - 4pm
Andor Labs

​Weeping Willow AME Zion Church
​​2220 Milton Rd, Charlotte, NC 28215
​​Fri: 9am - 2pm
​Grubb Properties on Elizabeth Avenue
​1523 Elizabeth Ave, Charlotte, NC 28204
​Mon - Fri: 9am - 4pm
​First Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church​
​​1515 Remount Rd, Charlotte, NC 28208
​​Mon - Fri: 9am - 3pm​​​
​Central Steele Creek Presbyterian Church
​9401 S Tryon St, Charlotte, NC 28273
Tues, Wed, Thurs: 9am - 3pm
OnCall Mobile Medical & Wellness

​Fairyland Academy (in first classroom)
​2300 Eastway Drive, Charlotte, NC 28205
Wed: 3pm - 5:30pm
​Fairyland Early Learning Institute (in gymnasium)
​2423 Eastway Drive, Charlotte, NC 28205
Tues: 3pm - 5:30pm
​Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church
​381 Crestdale Rd, Matthews, NC 28105
​10am - 2pm ONLY ON:
Tuesday, Feb 1
Monday, Feb 7

​Resourceful Clinical Laboratory

​New Beginnings Church (in parking lot of Community Life Center)
​5232 Margaret Wallace Rd, Matthews, NC 28105

Mon, Wed, Fri: 10am - 3pm
​Sunshine Daycare & Preschool
900 September Lane, Charlotte NC, 28208
​Mon: 2pm - 5pm
*Appointment required; click on link above
*$60 fee; eligible for reimbursement through insurance
​St Matthews Catholic Church
​8015 Ballantyne Commons Pkwy, Charlotte, NC 28277
​Tuesdays in Jan & Feb: 9am - 1pm 
Thursdays in Jan & Feb (closed Feb 3): 9am - 2pm

You may also find testing information and options available through local hospitals and pharmacies. 

CAN i test myself at home?

If you are experiencing symptoms or believe you may have been exposed to someone infected with COVID-19, MCPH strongly recommends you be tested at a site that is supervised by qualified health care providers. 

If you are unable to visit a site for any reason, it is still important that you get tested. If you decide to use an at-home test, consider the following:

  • Not all at-home tests are authorized by the FDA.
  • At-home tests can be expensive.
  • Some at-home tests require you to download an app to a smartphone.
  • Collecting your own sample can be difficult, and doing so incorrectly can cause an invalid result.
  • Results of at-home testing may not be accepted by employers, schools, airlines, cruises, or others requesting COVID-19 testing.

About At-Home Test Kits

Currently, two types of diagnostic at-home COVID-19 test kits available: 

  • Rapid antigen: Collect and test your specimen at home; get your result within 15 minutes of completing the test
    • Useful as a quick check before spending time with high-risk and vulnerable family members
  • Polymerase chain reaction (PCR): Collect your specimen at home and mail to a laboratory; get your result 48+ hours after it gets to the laboratory
    • Generally considered more accurate than rapid antigen tests

For a list of approved test kits, guidance for using at-home tests, and what to do once you have your results, visit the NC DHHS Approved COVID-19 Home Tests page

The CDC Self-Testing page offers additional information on taking at-home tests, including two instructional videos for using at-home tests and understanding the results.

Where to Get an At-Home Test Kit

Local Pharmacy or Retail Store

If you choose to use an at-home test kit, you may purchase one online or in store from pharmacies, retail stores, and other companies with or without a prescription from your health care provider. 

Nationwide Limited-Time Delivery Program

The Biden Administration will be delivering at-home test kits through the mail to all Americans who place an order. Starting January 19th, Americans will be able to order four free test kits per household (determined by residential address) online at or by phone at 1-800-232-0233, and tests will typically ship within 7-12 days of ordering. Read the January 14th statement from the federal government to learn more.

NC DHHS Limited-Time Delivery Program

If you are unable to go to a testing site or purchase an at-home test, you may qualify to have a FREE at-home test kit mailed to you by NC DHHS. Visit the COVID-19 Test Home Collection Kit Program for more information.

MCPH Limited-Time Distribution Program


WHat if i test positive?

If you get positive results from a local testing site or at-home test, with either a rapid antigen or PCR test, and/or develop symptoms of COVID-19, you need to stay home and isolate yourself from others in your home. Refer to the If You Test Positive section of this site for more information on home isolation and follow these steps:

  1. Isolate at home for 5 days after the start of your symptoms or the date of positive test.
  2. End isolation after 5 days ONLY if both of the following are true:
    • Your symptoms are gone (except loss of taste or smell, which can last for weeks or months after recovery)
    • You don’t have a fever without using medication
  3. Wear a mask around others AT ALL TIMES for 5 more days after ending isolation.
  4. If you still have a fever after 5 days of isolation, continue to stay at home until your fever has been gone for 24 hours. If your symptoms are severe, seek medical attention.

These fact sheets offer quarantine and isolation instructions for the general population and students, staff, and faculty in K-12 schools:

WHAT IF I TEST negative?

If you have symptoms, you should continue to isolate at home until you feel better and follow the advice of your health care provider. You should get tested again if your symptoms don't get better or get worse.

If you do not have symptoms but were exposed to someone with COVID-19, follow quarantine guidelines. If you develop symptoms, isolate at home and get tested again.

If you do not have symptoms and were not exposed to someone with COVID-19, you may return to safe activites and continue to wash your hands, distance yourself from others, and wear a mask around others when it is not possible to keep your distance.

We're Here to Answer Your Questions

Public Health Hotline: 980-314-9400

Option 3 (English) or Opción 8 (Español)

Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

This hotline is for general questions regarding COVID-19 and vaccines.
If you have a medical emergency, call 911.