COVID-19 Testing for Hospital Patients

For the safety of our patients and staff, UW Medicine is proactively testing all patients admitted to our hospitals for coronavirus, regardless of whether they have symptoms or not.

The testing program for hospital patients was piloted at UW Medical Center – Northwest. On Monday, April 13, it was implemented at UW Medical Center – Montlake and Harborview Medical Center.

What you need to know

If you need to be admitted to the hospital, you'll be tested for the coronavirus even if you're not experiencing any signs or symptoms of COVID-19 infection.

Why we’re testing hospital patients

Since some people may have COVID-19 without symptoms (asymptomatic), we want to know the status of every patient in our hospitals so our team can safely care for them.

We can test patients at the time of hospital admission because of the quick turnaround times for our internal lab tests.

This is similar to other standard screening tests that are done to keep patients and staff safe, such as tests to screen for antibiotic-resistant bacteria.