COVID-19 saliva testing site opens in Brooklyn Park

The first COVID-19 saliva testing site in the Twin Cities metro opened in Brooklyn Park Tuesday. 

It is one of 10 semi-permanent saliva testing sites the Minnesota is planning to open statewide to increase its COVID-19 testing capacity. There are already saliva testing sites open in Duluth, Winona and Moorhead. 

Saliva testing is a polymerse chain reaction (PCR) test just like the nasal swab. It is not an antigen test. MDH says saliva testing is just as accurate as the nasal swab. 

To collect the saliva sample, an individual spits into a funnel attached to a small test tube until enough salvia is collected. They then close the tube with a plug that releases a preservative into the sample, which keeps it good for up to two weeks without needing refrigeration. Tests results are typically available within 48-72 hours. 

The Brooklyn Park saliva testing lab is located in the former Office Max building in the Starlite Center strip mall. It will be open Monday-Friday from 12 p.m.-7 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. You can make an appointment ahead of time, but walk-ins are also permitted. 

The opening of the Brooklyn Park saliva testing site coincides with the opening of the state’s new saliva test processing lab in Oakdale, which is expected to more than double the state’s COVID-19 testing capacity.