Who is required to test? (updated August 23, 2021)

Starting August 23, 2021, employees who are not fully vaccinated and employees who have received an exemption must complete a COVID-19 saliva test at least twice per a seven-day period on non-consecutive days.

COVID-19 Saliva Testing Information for Employees

If you have not yet registered for SHIELD Illinois COVID-19 saliva testing, register at Portal.shieldillinois.com and use the agency code uicr-66jlmqqe for location “UICOMR” with your uic.edu email to create an account.

After you register (or if you have previously registered for an account) you will have the option to schedule your appointment. You do not have to strictly adhere to your appointment time.

Current hours for testing are Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (and until 6 p.m. on Thursdays).

Testing is available onsite at the Mile Square Health Center for staff and faculty as follows:

  • Monday from 9 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
  • Thursday from 9 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
  • Friday from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Mile Square employees may also use the testing site at Parkview Ave. as employees.


What do I have to do?

In order to get tested, individuals should sign up for an account on the SHIELD Illinois portal and schedule their test appointment. (You will receive a text message for verification, so have your phone handy. For compliance purposes, sign up using your UIC email. Check your junk mail folder if you used email.) Portal Set Up Instructions

To sign up for an account:

Go to Website: Portal.shieldillinois.com 

Use link: Sign up for an account (under the Password box)

Use appropriate Agency code:

         Agency Code for Employees: uicr-66jlmqqe

         Agency Code for Students: uicr-4pjtnutl

         Agency Code for Community: df5brbrj

Fill in all information and click “Submit.”

Anyone who needs help or has problems with registration should call SHIELD’s 24/7 patient hotline: 217-265-6059.

PATIENT QUESTIONS 217-265-6059 24 hours a day, 7 days a weekGet Help With: • Signing in and registering patient portal accounts • Scheduling testing appointments • Viewing appointments • Viewing test results • Other patient portal questions

Where do I go?

Students, staff and faculty should use Pelham Road to enter campus and do not park in indicated areas.

Continue to Use Main Entrance ONLY – You must come into campus through the main entrance in the A Building to be checked-in, answer screening questions, and have your temperature checked until August 2. DO NOT enter through the testing center/East Building doors, even if they are open. If you go out the East Building door to do saliva testing outside, you may come back in through that door without having to re-check in at the main desk.

The testing site is located in tents in the South Parking Lot, which is the lot nearest the Commons entrance near the flagpoles, or in the Commons, depending on weather and community testing. Bring your QR code on your mobile phone or printed out.

When are appointments available? 

New Monday and Friday hours for students, staff and faculty at the SHIELD Illinois COVID-19 Testing Center on the UIC Health Sciences Campus-Rockford will allow testing to occur every weekday.
Hours for UIC students, staff and faculty: (updated 8/16/21)
    • Mondays 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • Tuesdays: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • Wednesdays: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • Thursdays: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
    • Fridays: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Community testing will also occur these days.

New, More Flexible Saliva Testing Announced
Students, staff and faculty are encouraged to make an appointment for saliva testing through the SHIELD portal and you may test any time during the open hours that day even if it is not your appointment time. Just bring your QR code. If you forgot to register for an appointment, you can make an appointment up to 10 minutes before collection hours end. You can walk in, but the QR code truly speeds up check-out.

Why do I have to do this?

As we return to campus, ensuring the health and safety of our campus community is of utmost importance. Per UIC policy, routine testing of non-vaccinated individuals can help us identify infected but asymptomatic individuals and guide them for isolation to help stop the transmission of COVID-19 by catching early infections.

How is the testing conducted?

Before your test, do not eat, drink (including water), brush teeth, chew gum, smoke, or use tobacco products within 60 minutes of providing a saliva sample. Doing any of these things within 60 minutes of providing a sample could produce an inconclusive result and require the individual to re-test. Remove any lip cosmetics.

At the testing center, you will be instructed to pick up a tube and drool into it until an adequate sample is obtained. This usually takes only a few minutes. Thinking of something sour or your favorite food may help you salivate.

The test is a PCR-based test that can be used for surveillance or diagnostic testing for COVID-19.

FDA Fact Sheet for Patients

How do I get my test results?

Test results will be posted in the SHIELD Illinois patient portal after the lab results are completed, usually the same day as you are tested. Note: this is not the UI Health patient portal used for previous saliva tests.

If you are unable to do saliva testing for a medical reason, contact Employee Health Services or Student Health and Wellness for alternatives.

Frequently Asked Questions About Saliva Testing

Prior to SHIELD Illinois Testing, Rockford saliva tests were housed in UI Health’s MyChart. The assumption (in Chicago) is this will no longer be the case with SHIELD Illinois Testing. Are there any efforts to coordinate SHIELD Illinois Testing with Chicago campus testing for faculty with joint appointments in Chicago, to avoid having to complete saliva tests on both campuses?

Currently, there is not a mechanism to share results between UI Health’s MyChart and Shield Illinois.  Until such time there is the ability to share results, testing would be required at both locations for unvaccinated individuals.

Vaccinated Students, Staff and Faculty Exempt From Saliva Testing

Effective, July 12, 2021, all students, faculty and staff of the UIC Health Sciences Campus-Rockford, Correctional Health Care Services, Mile Square Health Center – L.P. Johnson Rockford and MERIT will have the option to opt out of regular saliva testing and daily health screenings if you are fully vaccinated (14 days after your final vaccination) and you disclose your COVID-19 vaccination status.