Need a COVID-19 test? Avoid the ER but other options available

Emergency departments in the region are increasingly busy as COVID-19 cases increase, and hospitals are urging people who are just seeking a test to go to other faster and cheaper settings.

Dayton Children’s Hospital stated Thursday evening that its emergency department is reporting “a large increase” in families bringing their child to get an order for a COVID-19 test.

The hospital recommended that for families seeking test orders for children, to call the child’s primary care provider, who can order a test if needed, or to schedule an online appointment through their Kids Express.

At the Dayton Children’s testing tent between the main campus and Child Health Pavilion, people can also go to directly for testing without an appointment. However, they will have to pay out of pocket for the test if they don’t get a physician’s order first. The hospital has testing details and hours at

If symptoms are severe or concerning, go to one of Dayton Children’s emergency departments.

The number of Ohioans tested each day has been climbing for weeks and a higher percentage of tests have been coming back positive.

As of Tuesday, more than 46,000 Ohioans were tested, while a month prior close to 12,500 daily tests were performed, according to Ohio Department of Health.

On Tuesday, 8.7% of COVID-19 tests were coming back positive in Ohio, while a month prior about 4.9% of daily tests were coming back positive.

Besides Dayton Children’s, there are many options to get COVID-19 testing in the region, some of the options including:

  • Premier Health and CompuNet Clinical Laboratories have appointment-only testing sites, and details and online appointment scheduling can be found at
  • For a test without an appointment, Premier and CompuNet have a testing site at OnMain, 1229 S. Main St., Dayton, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. Monday to Friday.
  • At all the sites by Premier and CompuNet, a physician’s order is required, or if you do not have a physician’s order, they do self-pay tests for $100 for a PCR test and $60 for antigen or “rapid” tests.
  • Kettering Health has testing by appointment and physician order at on-demand care sites, with scheduling at 937-558-3988 or
  • The major pharmacy chains all have local COVID-19 testing sites by appointment with online scheduling, including Rite Aid at; CVS at; and Walgreens at

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