How does Urgent Care STD Testing compare to knō? Everything you need to know in 2023

Before we get into the dirty details of it all - yes, urgent care clinics do offer STD testing; but let's take a closer look at the nuances of the services offered, how much they cost, how they compare to knō, and whatever else you might need to know. 

knō is happy to be your provider for STI screening services, but if for some reason we are not the right option, many urgent care clinics offer STD testing. These clinics can provide a convenient and affordable option for people who are concerned about their sexual health. Here are some things to keep in mind if you are considering getting an STD test at an urgent care clinic:

While we are very much biased in thinking that everyone who is looking to get tested should use knō (our opinion, not medical advice), the reality is that urgent care may better suit the needs for those looking for convenient & affordable options to maintaining their sexual wellness. To illustrate these differences, we've broken it down for you so you can easily understand which service may be best for your sexual health journey. 

Type of Testing Offered

It's often assumed that anytime you're getting tested you're being tested for the everything - the whole shebang. This isn't necessarily always true.

This is due - in part - to the fact that not all urgent care clinics offer the same type of STI tests - as they are often independently owned & the testing offered is determined by which insurance they accept (more on this later), the physicians on staff, and a plethora of other factors. This means that one urgent care clinic may only offer basic tests for Chlamydia and Gonorrhea, while others may offer a more comprehensive range of testing. Because of this, it's often helpful to ask what types of tests are available at the clinic you are considering. This can be as simple as asking when booking the appointment by phone to ensure that you are able to screen for the STIs you're intending to.

knō, on the other hand, approaches the test offering with a more-is-more mentality. This doesn't mean that when testing with knō that you can order a small test, or a large one, and pick or choose which STIs you want to be screened for; as much as we have made the decision to only offer one test that tests for - basically - everything. 

What is (basically) everything? Well...
  • Herpes 1
  • Herpes 2
  • HIV
  • Mpox
  • Trich
  • Hepatitis B
  • Hepatitis C
  • Syphilis
  • Chlamydia
  • Gonorrhea
  • Mycoplasma Genitalium
This may seem excessive to some - particularly since the general public may have never even heard of some of these diseases. But the decision really came down to asking, "Why not?" Our test doesn't require additional steps - or a higher price - in order to screen for Mycoplasma Genitalium, so why wouldn't we include it? All that said, we do not offer throat or anal swaps, so we don't cover everything-everything.

How much does testing cost?

Healthcare costs can be pretty spooky, especially with the number of internet accounts of people getting sneaky bills from hospitals full of cryptic surprise fees. It's highly unlikely (again, not medical advice) that getting an STI test at an urgent care clinic - or really anywhere else - is going to break your bank account; though prices are far from standardized. 

The cost of an STD test at an urgent care clinic can vary depending on the type of test and the location of the clinic. Same as a cold brew in SoHo might cost you $14 as compared to maybe $4 at a cafe in the mountains - urgent care prices may fluctuate based off of a variety of factors. Something that can be considered - however - is that some clinics may offer discounted rates or sliding scale fees for patients who cannot afford to pay the full cost of the test; likely to deter patients from not getting tested if it's needed.

knō has decided to approach pricing in the same way we've approached our screening offerings. One test means one price ($169) and no hidden fees or surge pricing based on location. While other home tests - yes they exist - vary in price anywhere from $75 to $250, they also vary in regard to the number of infections they screen for; and of course don't come with an app to share that you've tested on your favorite dating apps. 

Ultimately, knō's goal is to simplify the process of getting tested by having a flat price with a set number of STIs that our users test for - taking the guess work out of being tested. As we continue to set (and accomplish) our goals, we do hope to have flexible pricing, payment plans, and subscription offerings in the future to ensure accessible pricing for anyone who wants to test with us & practice sexual wellness.

Insurance coverage

While this potentially could be the most complicated portion of this article, the reality is that we can't really get into it. knō isn't currently covered by any insurance - we are priced to be accessible without it. For urgent care clinics, the answer is a choose your own adventure situation. Check with your insurance provider and they'll know better that we do. 

Confidentiality with results

Possibly the place where knō & urgent care clinics have the most in common, neither of us will ever share your test results or any sensitive information with anyone but you without your permission. While there are very strict regulations that prevent anyone from doing so anyway - doing so would just be really messed up so we wouldn't ever do it even if we could.

When do you get results?

Are you tired of us saying "It depends" yet? Generally when visiting an urgent care clinic you can expect to receive your test results within a few days to a week - with some STIs allowing for rapid testing that provide you with instant results. These rapid tests can be incredibly helpful if you think you've been exposed, exhibiting symptoms, or otherwise feel as though you need results fast. 

knō - while fast - is not intended as an emergency test, or otherwise to be used to confirm infections or be used by those exhibiting symptoms or potentially exposed. We understand that these things happen, but knō is specifically for those intending to regularly screen for STIs as a part of their sexual wellness practice. 

What does this have to do with results time? Well, it means that with ordering a test, collecting your sample, and sending the sample to our labs - it might take a week (maybe two) to receive your results. We ship same day, and our labs turn around samples quickly, but if you're in a rush - by all means see a doctor.

Wrapping it up

Urgent care clinics are a wonderful public resource for affordable & easy to access healthcare services - include STI screenings. Similarly, knō is offering a new option for those who prefer an added level of convenience and privacy when conducting regular STI screenings as a part of their sexual wellness practice. 

Ultimately, our intention is not to persuade anyone to choose knō over another service - as much as provide the information needed to help make an informed decision for which service is best for you. 

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