How to get a COVID-19 test in Minnesota or Wisconsin

In most cases, a video visit is needed before you can be tested for COVID-19. This is so we can assess your symptoms and help you get the right treatment. If your doctor recommends you should be tested, we’ll work with you to schedule a drive-up test at one of our clinics in Minnesota or Wisconsin currently offering tests. 

After your test, results will be available in your online HealthPartners or Park Nicollet account within two to four days. Results are not available over the phone.

You can find more information about getting COVID-19 test results below.

What to expect if you qualify for a COVID-19 test 1. Prepare for your test

In order to reduce the spread of COVID-19, we require everyone to wear a mask or face covering before arriving for testing. If you don’t have a mask, you can follow CDC guidelines on making a no-sew cloth face covering. Members of your care team will also wear masks and other personal protective equipment (PPE).

2. Arrive at your test location

When you arrive, follow signs or directions from clinic staff. In many cases, you’ll be tested for COVID-19 without leaving your car. This helps speed up the testing process and also helps everyone practice better social distancing.

3. Get your test results in your online account

After your test, you can expect results through your online HealthPartners or Park Nicollet account in two to four days. Test results are not available over the phone.

If you don't have an online HealthPartners or Park Nicollet account, it’s easy to create an account. All you need is your ID number from your insurance card to get started.

Getting test results for children younger than 18 years old

For security reasons, children younger than 18 years old cannot have their own online accounts.

If you go to HealthPartners or Park Nicollet regularly for care – or you’ve also been tested for COVID-19 with us – you can set up proxy access to get your child’s test results through your own online account. After you sign in to your account or create an account:

  • Click your name in the upper right-hand corner.
  • Click “Manage account.”
  • Click "Contact settings" or “My care” on the left-hand side.
  • Click “Request access to your child’s account.”
  • Fill out the form.

If you don’t go to HealthPartners or Park Nicollet regularly for care – and you haven’t also been tested for COVID-19 with us – please call Website Support at 952-853-8888 to set up an online account for your child. Website Support is available Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT.

What to do if you have questions or need additional help

For privacy reasons, we’re unable to report test results over the phone. To get your results, please sign in to your online HealthPartners or Park Nicollet account, or easily create an account if you don’t have one.

If you need help managing your symptoms or you would like to speak to a doctor, please schedule a video visit. During a video visit, your doctor will review your symptoms and help create the best treatment plan.

Our nurses are also available 24/7 to answer questions about symptoms, help you decide what kind of care you need and offer home treatment suggestions. You can reach us anytime by calling the HealthPartners CareLine℠ at 800-551-0859 or the Park Nicollet Nurse Line at 952-993-4665.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

You can get tested for COVID-19 at HealthPartners if at least one of the following is true:

  • You have COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Your doctor recommended you get tested.
  • You’re scheduled for a surgery/procedure or to be induced within 48 hours with one of our doctors.
  • You’ve had close contact (within 6 feet for 15 minutes or more) with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19, make an appointment online. In most cases, you’ll start with a video visit with a doctor. This is so we can assess your symptoms and make sure you get the appropriate treatment. If your doctor recommends that you should be tested, we’ll work with you to schedule a drive-up test.

In addition, COVID-19 symptoms and flu symptoms can be similar, so a video visit with a doctor can help you get the right care. If we determine a COVID-19 test is necessary, we’ll help you schedule one.

If you don’t have symptoms of COVID-19 but you’ve been exposed to it, the CDC recommends waiting five to seven days (while isolating yourself) before testing.

If you don’t have symptoms of COVID-19 and you haven’t been exposed to it, we’re unable to schedule you for a test right now due to limited appointment availability. Exceptions include doctor recommendations, as well as testing in advance of surgeries/procedures or induced labor.

Even though we may be unable to test you right now, you still have testing options. For testing for travel, sports, school or another reason, please check with the Minnesota Department of Health or the Wisconsin Department of Health Services to find information and resources.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19

The cost of testing is $200 ($132 for the test, plus $68 for the collection). However, most people won’t pay for testing and collection out of pocket.

New government relief plans require all health plans to cover COVID-19 testing and related services with no patient cost sharing. “No patient cost sharing” means that you won’t pay out-of-pocket costs for any part of COVID-19 testing.

Coverage if you have HealthPartners insurance

If you’re a HealthPartners member, you have 100% coverage for COVID-19 testing and diagnosis. This includes the cost of the care visit associated with testing.

  • If you get tested at an out-of-network lab or clinic, you need to submit some key information (PDF) so we’re able to pay for the test. If you need help submitting these claims, call Member Services at the number on the back of your member ID card.

HealthPartners is also waiving the cost for fully insured members for the treatment of COVID-19 when getting care from an in-network provider, effective March 1, 2020 through March 31, 2021. This includes copays, coinsurance and deductibles. 

For self-insured members, call Member Services at the number on the back of your member ID card to understand your coverage.

For HealthPartners Medicare members, the cost of COVID-19 testing and treatment is covered fully until the federal government declares an end to the public health emergency. This includes copays, coinsurance and deductibles.

Some airlines or travel agencies may require you (or your child) to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test. We recommend checking with your airline and your destination to confirm testing documentation needs and quarantine requirements.

For domestic travel (inside the United States), you can find your destination’s most current requirements by checking state and territorial health department websites.

For international travel (outside the United States), you can find your destination’s most current requirements by checking travel advisories issued by the U.S. Department of State. We recommend contacting our travel medicine experts to schedule a pre-travel visit for vaccines/counseling.

To get a COVID-19 test for travel purposes, you can review testing options and resources through the Minnesota Department of Health or the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. Due to limited appointment availability, we’re unable to schedule these COVID-19 tests at HealthPartners right now.

If your child needs to be tested for COVID-19, we’ll work to make the process as smooth as possible.

We are only testing symptomatic patients ages 3 months and older in drive-up testing. If your child is under 3 months old and is having respiratory symptoms – or you have concerns about COVID-19 – your baby should be seen in a respiratory clinic where testing can be done along with a full physical exam and assessment. We feel this is the safest care option for our youngest patients.

If you are concerned about strep throat in your child, we’ll have your child complete a video visit with a provider prior to getting tested. Sore throat is a COVID-19 symptom; therefore, the video visit is to help determine whether your child will need testing for COVID-19 and strep throat or just COVID-19.

On the day of your test

You may want to prepare your child for the fact that the tester will be in full personal protective equipment (PPE), which may be scary. There are several videos online that demonstrate the procedure and may help your child prepare.

Since we’re scheduling drive-up testing appointments, we’re hopeful waiting time in the car will be minimal. However, please be prepared for potential waits in the car and have comforting music, toys, stuffed animals and snacks along with you. Your child should use the restroom before you come for drive-up testing.

We require all children over the age of 2 to wear a mask of face covering to their testing visit.

If your child rides in a car seat, it’s best to position the car seat where a tester has easy access to the child (for example, in a row near a door). Testers cannot climb into a car to do the test. If this is necessary, you may be asked to sit with your child on your lap in a chair at the drive-up site.

If you have multiple children in the car that need to be tested, please think about bringing an additional adult with you to remain in the car with unattended children if one child has to be tested outside of the car.

The COVID-19 test involves inserting a swab (similar to a Q-tip) into your child’s nostril to get a sample. This can be an unpleasant feeling, but the swab does need to go in all the way to the back of your child’s nose and has to be inserted for at least three seconds for the swab to be most accurate. Parents may be asked to hold their child’s head during testing. Afterward, your child may cough or even have some slight nose bleeding – this is normal.

Please be aware that if your child is combative or resistant to the test, we will do our best to complete the test but only if it’s safe for both the tester and your child. If you have additional concerns, please let us know when making your appointment.

Before returning to work, you must contact your employer for return-to-work instructions. You can request return-to-work documents and work accommodation letters through your online account.

All our travel testing is currently performed by HealthPartners Central Laboratory.