Free COVID PCR Tests Available at Corvallis Rite Aid

There are numerous ways to be tested for COVID-19 in Benton County. Options include a visit to your local medical clinic, participating in Oregon State University’s TRACE program (if you are a student, faculty, or staff member), and ordering a test from private companies who offer kits that are delivered to your door. Another option Benton County residents have is participation in the Project Baseline COVID-19 Program, a national effort to expanding testing and tracing of the virus throughout the United States.  

The Corvallis Rite Aid on NW 9th Street is currently administering COVID tests through the Project Baseline program free of charge to the test-taker. As this testing does not required health insurance or payment, the option seems very attractive to Benton County residents.  

“We’ve been full every day,” one Rite Aid pharmacist said of the testing slots available at that location through Project Baseline. 

In order to get a free virus test, three criteria need to be met of the individual seeking screening: you must be 18 years or older (if you are younger, a parent or guardian must be with you), have the ability to get to and from Rite Aid, and you will be required to sign a Public Health authorization form. The Public Health authorization is a key component of Project Baseline’s goals to combat COVID.  

Along with your test results, personal information is shared with state and federal organizations to increase understanding of how the virus is spread and enhance programs that are battling the pandemic. This information is not accessible to the public.  

Results of the test, which is the Polymerase Chain Reaction (or PCR) diagnostic method used to test for RNA shed by the virus, are usually available to the test-taker within 1-3 days. It is important to note that these PCR tests only determine if a patient is currently infected by the COVID-19 virus. This differs from the antigen test, which detects the presence of antibodies created after a person has recovered from an initial virus infection. 

Go here to find out more and schedule a testing date. 

By: Lauren Zatkos