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Frequently asked questions


Yes, but you will have to complete an onboarding form for each population if you choose to configure them differently. Each onboarding form submission assumes that your program selections apply to that entire population.

For step-by-step tips and instructions for filling out the Onboarding Form, click here.

Color Software

If the onsite tool isn’t working for any reason, you can collect samples using our backup paper intake form. Note the test result on the form once the test is complete. If required, retain the rapid test device so that you can upload a photo of the completed test. Once the onsite tool is working, please enter the information from the paper forms into the software, making sure to enter the correct test date.

Sign in to Color or create an account at We’ll automatically send you an email to confirm your email address once you’ve created your account. After confirming, your account is ready for use.  If you don’t see the confirmation email, please check your spam folder.

If you can log into, but do not have access to the tools you expect, such as the results dashboards or the onsite tool, contact your organization’s program lead, who can grant permissions.

To review the questions participants are asked when registering for a COVID-19 test, view our Registration documentation.

Access to the Results Dashboard includes compliance data, including aggregate and participant-level data.

Program managers have the ability to grant and revoke permissions to the results dashboard and to the onsite tool. To manage staff permissions, log in at  Follow the instructions for the results dashboard Access Management or the onsite tool Staff Management.

Administrators using Color to register participants can view their name, date of birth (DOB), zip code, sex, email and phone number.


Administrators with PHI dashboard access can view name, DOB, zip code, sex, email, phone number, ethnicities, language preference, test result, and whether the patient opened their test result. They’ll also see the sample collection date, report release date, organization, and population/site.

In the aggregate dashboard, administrators cannot view any personally identifiable information (PII) or personal health information (PHI). 

You can request that phone, zip, ethnicity, etc., be hidden in the dashboard.  Please contact your Client Services manager for more information.

Yes, as long as a weekly cadence is specified in the eligibility file.  Reminders will be paused indefinitely for those who test positive. View the notifications for those with upcoming test dates and those who are overdue in our Repeat Testing documentation.

Participant support

The individual should reach out to their program administrator. The program administrator can add them to the list of approved participants using through the Eligibility Data Management tool.

Participants should contact, or call us toll-free every day of the week between 6am and 5pm Pacific Time at (844) 352-6567 in the US. Those outside the US can reach us at +1 650-651-7116.

This means they already have a Color account with this email. They should head to and click the “Forgot your password?” link at the bottom of the page to reset their password.

Test Kits & Shipping

Color will automatically ship your initial order of kits and ship-back materials, based on the quantities you have agreed to in your initial agreement signed with Color.  Work with your Client Services manager to place subsequent purchase orders.

Samples must arrive at the lab within 56 hours of collection. If your samples will not arrive within that window, please destroy the collected samples and retest. Note that staff or a courier can deliver samples directly to the lab if the test site is near the lab.

There are specific expiration dates listed on components of the kits. Please destroy any unused, expired kits by placing them in the regular trash.

You should expect to receive orders five business days after they have been placed.

Yes, please return all samples within 24 hours of sample collection.  If you are using FedEx to return samples, you will need to drop off your samples at a dropbox location by each day’s cutoff, typically between 3:30pm and 5:00pm local time.

Lab Processing

It is possible to test positive even if you have recovered from COVID-19 in the past. The CDC recommends that you wait 90 days after recovering from COVID-19 before testing again unless you develop new symptoms, in which case your doctor can determine whether testing is right for you.

Color uses a nasal swab molecular test with SARS-CoV-2 RT-LAMP Diagnostic Assay – a real time reverse transcription loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP). This method is as accurate as RT-PCR, about 50% faster, and relies on less constrained supply chains. Our high-throughput, CLIA-certified lab is fully automated to drive down costs and make testing simple and accessible.

Color’s COVID-19 test can detect variant strains of SARS-CoV-2 with the same sensitivity as the original virus. It is not able to identify which strain of SARS-CoV-2 a person has.

Test results are affected by the COVID-19 vaccine. COVID-19 vaccines do not contain any live virus, so they will not result in a positive test result.

Color’s test has a >99% accuracy with a limit of detection of 0.75 copies/u for samples processed up to 72 hours from collection time. Color’s FDA-authorized test performs in line with gold-standard COVID-19 molecular diagnostic tests. A fact sheet about Color’s COVID-19 test, a Molecular Laboratory Development Test LDT, is available here.


First, create an account at Then, log in at If you’re the organization lead, you automatically have results dashboard access. If you’re a site administrator, contact your organization lead, who can request dashboard access on your behalf via the form at the bottom of this page. Head to our Color dashboards guide for more information & training.

The participant and the ordering physician will receive a copy of test results. Color is licensed under the Clinical Lab Improvement Amendments (CLIA), which require our tests to be physician ordered. Results are also transmitted to federal, state and local health agencies as required by law, and may be returned to the organization sponsoring the test if there is explicit participant consent.

When test results become available, participants receive a text message and/or email notification that links them to a HIPAA-compliant portal to view their results.  They can also visit to check the status of their results.

Inconclusive results mean that test results could not be classified as either positive or negative. Unsatisfactory results are issued for invalid or failed samples. In either case, we recommend that the participant re-tests.

Privacy & Security

Color destroys samples four days after the result is released.

Color complies with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (“HIPAA”) to maintain the privacy and security of your protected health information.  Color manages test results via a secure, password-protected portal. Head to our Notice of Privacy Practices for more information.

Color, as a CAP-accredited, CLIA-regulated laboratory, must retain test records for a period of at least two years after the test date.

No, Color does not perform genomic sequencing on COVID-19 samples. Color’s SARS-CoV-2 testing is physically and functionally different from our clinical genetics lab and all elements of the testing are physically separate from any elements of clinical genetic testing.

Antigen Testing & Training

The Abbot BinaxNOW COVID-19 Ag Card is a point-of-care antigen test that can provide results in 15 minutes or less. This test is manufactured by Abbott Laboratories and detects active infections in people who have symptoms of COVID-19. It can also be used to screen people who do not have symptoms in order to reduce the chances that an outbreak will occur.

More information about the Abbot BinaxNOW COVID-19 Ag Card can be found here:

All participants with a positive antigen test result need to complete confirmatory molecular testing. This can be done onsite or at home, depending on your testing program.

The antigen test results are ready in 15-30 minutes.

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