The NIH has two in-house mechanisms for providing COVID-19 testing; for-cause and asymptomatic testing. For-cause testing is used for personnel that are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or have recently tested positive for COVID-19. Asymptomatic testing is for personnel with no symptoms, and may include personnel that were exposed to COVID-19 positive cases, unvaccinated personnel with a medical or religious exemption, and personnel who are voluntarily submitting to routine testing.
Personnel that report COVID-19 symptoms will be asked to have a COVID-19 PCR-based test. This may be performed in the community (at the employee’s expense) or at the NIH “Car-Line” testing facility. This facility is staffed by NIH personnel, including nurses, safety professionals, and emergency responders.
Regardless of vaccination or exposure status, any symptomatic personnel must not report to work and should test at the earliest For-Cause testing opportunity. Symptomatic personnel must report their change in health status to their case manager to confirm you received a PCR- base test during the appropriate timeframe. Personnel without an assigned case manager should complete the
OMS COVID Screening Questionnaire.
The NIH Clinical Center has established a program for testing asymptomatic staff for SARS-CoV-2. The program is voluntary but strongly encouraged for those working onsite. Personnel can schedule an appointment for asymptomatic testing by going to https://clinweb.cc.nih.gov/cct. To access the site, you need to be on NIH VPN, NIH IC CITRIX or a NIH Workstation. This portal can be used to select schedule testing at all NIH asymptomatic testing sites for all NIH locations.
The program offers saliva testing in addition to mid-turbinate swab testing. Mid-turbinate testing is the preferred testing method. For saliva testing, it is best to avoid eating, drinking, smoking, or chewing gum or tobacco for at least 30 minutes before sample collection.
If a staff member needs results documented in time for travel, e.g., to make an international flight, it is
absolutely vital that the staff member being tested informs the staff doing the collection that the test is not routine and results are needed within 48 hours. The specimen should have a priority label placed on it to receive the special handling required to receive the results on time.
Asymptomatic Testing Locations.
Testing Site Building and Room
Testing Hour Locations|
Schedule varies due to demand, please check the Clinical Center Scheduling System website
Shady Grove Gym, 9609
Medical Center Drive
|Wednesday 9:00AM to 11:00AM EST|
BRC NIDA-NIA Campus.
Monday through Thursday
10:00AM to 2:00PM EST
|Frederick, Maryland (NCI-Frederick and IRF)|
Building 426 Asymptomatic Testing
|Wednesday 12:30PM to 2:00PM EST|
|Research Triangle Park, North Carolina (NIEHS)||Building 101 Parking Lot Asymptomatic Testing Site|
Monday 7:30AM to 12:00PM EST
Tuesday 12:00PM to 5:00PM EST
Wednesday 12:00PM to 5:00PM EST
Thursday 7:30AM to 12:00PM EST
|Building 1/Room 401||Monday 7:00AM to 12:30 MST|
Testing Requirements at Medium and High Community Levels
When a location moves to medium or high community level, COVID-19 testing is required for all federal employees, trainees, volunteers, guest researchers and tenants entering an NIH government-owned or leased facility, when that person is not fully vaccinated (e.g., partially vaccinated, unvaccinated, pending medical/religious exemption, or unreported vaccination status). If you are not physically working at an NIH leased or owned facility, you are NOT subject to this requirement.
Tests results must be from a PCR-based test conducted by a licensed provider (e.g., your primary healthcare provider, a drug store, testing site, etc.) or a digital result from a proctored antigen test kit. Results from at-home antigen test kits that are not proctored will not be accepted.
Testing requirements based on vaccination status and personnel status (e.g., employee, trainee, contractor, visitor, etc.) are outlined in the table below.
|Not Responded||Yes - weekly ||Yes - 72 hr.
prior to onsite
|Unvaccinated||Yes - weekly ||Yes - 72 hr.
prior to onsite
|Partially vaccinated ||Yes - weekly ||Yes - 72 hr.
prior to onsite
|Fully vaccinated with Primary Series ||No||No|
|Up to Date with Vaccination ||No||No|
Federal employees and trainees must submit a test result to https://covid-rcms.ors.od.nih.gov/app/home each week that they come onsite. The test result must be of a test conducted from Sunday to Saturday of the week that they came onsite. For example, a trainee that has not submitted their vaccination records and comes to an NIH building on Tuesday, must submit a negative test result for a test taken that week. The negative test result must be from a PCR-based test or a proctored antigen test with a digital result. It must have been collected Sunday through Saturday of the week they were onsite. A result from a test taken on the previous Saturday will not be regarded as meeting the requirement.
Contractors and visitors that are not fully vaccinated or who have not reported their vaccination status must be tested within 72 hours before visiting the campus. For example, if an unvaccinated visitor were to come to an NIH facility at noon Friday they must present a negative PCR or digital printout of a proctored antigen test kit where the sample was collected no earlier than noon on Tuesday.