Brief Description

Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR)

Laboratory Unit



Real-Time PCR

Specimen Collection

2019-nCoV Collection Kits

Before collecting and shipping specimens for Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) testing, please call the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services at 877-435-8411 for approval. Note that before any specimen is sent for testing, DHSS staff must first be consulted!

After consultation and determination that the patient meets the criteria for testing, contact the Missouri State Public Health Laboratory (MSPHL) at 573/751-3334 or 800/392-0272 if you have questions regarding collection and shipping prior to collecting the specimens. This will help ensure that proper specimens are obtained in the right quantity, and that they are packed and transported properly.

MO PUI Guidance

Video: Testing and Packaging of COVID-19 Samples: DHSS'


Acceptable Specimen Type(s)

Test Request Form(s)

Possible Results

  • Not Detected
  • Positive 2019-nCoV
  • Inconclusive (Specimen may be referred to CDC for additional testing)
  • Invalid (Specimen is inadequate for testing, a new specimen may need to be collected)

Unacceptable Conditions

  • The name on the specimen does not match the name on the requisition form.
  • The specimen container is not labeled with the patient’s name.
  • Improper storage/transport of specimen.
  • The sample collected with improper collection device—cotton-tipped or calcium-alginate swab, wooden-shaft swab, transport media not intended for viruses.
  • The specimen is not one of the listed acceptable specimens.

Interfering Substances

Cotton-tipped or calcium-alginate swab, wooden-shaft swab, transport media not intended for viruses

Result Reported

Testing is performed and results are reported the same day the specimen is received.



CPT Codes




Additional Information