Working the line at CityMD

Lines for covid testing at CityMD on Chambers look like they go around the corner, but the new system is actually pretty efficient: you line up at 7:30 or so in order for them to take your cell number. When your appointment comes up, they text you and you have 30 minutes to make it back to the office. I waited about a half hour at 7:45, then about an hour all in when they called me back to the office for a 9:45 appointment. The results are emailed within the hour or so.

When people showed up at 9:45, when I was queued up to come inside, they told them they were full for the day.

And if you don’t want to wake up early, you can have these guys stand in for you.

Also, it’s exciting to hear about friends getting their first rounds of vaccine. Several folks I know in the neighborhood — teachers and EMTs in particular — are lined up to get their first shot this week.



  1. I agree that the lining up system is efficient. However, the process of actually getting the test is not efficient at all. The nurse takes vitals, asks about medical history etc. and after the test is administered, you have to wait for even an MD to stop by to see whether you have questions. All completely unnecessary for a test. I have not received the bill yet, but I presume this is done so that CityMD can charge more to your insurance. As a result, a process that at other places takes a couple of minutes, takes 10-15 minutes at CityMD. The longer time means that both patients and staff are unnecessarily exposed longer to people who potentially have Covid and CityMD is processing fewer tests per day than they have the capacity for.

    • ” I presume this is done so that CityMD can charge more to your insurance”

      bingo. one of the small percentage of businesses that are making more than they ever imagined due to covid.

  2. The process is seamless. The people working at CityMD on Chambers, security, front desk, medical staff, are so nice and professional. Got there on a rainy New Years Eve and my daughter and I were 6th and 7th on line so we got right inside at 8:00. Got there at 6:45 and home by 8:30 with results by 9:15.

  3. I don’t know anything about this place other than that it’s there, but FWIW there’s a tent/van under the FDR at the end of Wall Street that’s doing tests. I walk by there several times a week, usually late morning/early afternoon, and have only seen one person who seemed to be using it, so no lines. Their web site is (this location is not listed on the website) and the tent says “Gold standard PCR Covid testing / With no out-of-pocket cost.”

    • When comments are more informative than the article – that’s what I call a great journalism.

    • I used the labq service under the FDR last Thursday – staff were lovely and professional but 5 days later, I am still waiting for the results. Great to see groups like these offering no fee testing and disgusting that other groups are profiting from this global pandemic but if the city (this country) is serious about getting this under control, it needs to ramp up free testing and turnaround time. Mask up and stay safe people

      • There is a scandal brewing with LabQ. These vans park, you assume they are trusted. I also was tested at pier 11 on Jan 26. And no results 5 days later. They are still getting away with promoting 24 hr turnaround on their website. I’ve tried to get city/ media attention and no one seems to care how wrong this is. Maybe Tribeca Citizen can take the story :)

        • I tested few times with Labq, they have a great system, I’m getting results within 24 hours, and a text notification with a link for the results, in January It did take me a few days to get results back, the major labs had turnaround times of a week or two, It seems that everyone struggled after the holiday season to get results on time, but I’m great full for the NysDoh for getting this vans out in the street, it’s a life saver, I used to wait hours in the line by CitiMD and the results was few times a false positive, only PCR results are accurate, We will need to have to this test locations for some time, as I have some allergy issues and my brother does as well, and he got very sick from the vaccine, I guess one day I will get it too, but it’s really great to have this service.

    • There’s also a van at the corner of Water and Whitehall next to the SI Ferry terminal. Black van with “COVID testing” in big white letters; easy to spot. Has a sign on the street with the labq info like the one at the Seaport.

      There’s another van on the esplanade in BPC next to the police memorial with “” on it but couldn’t get the web site just info on fast tests, which is what they seem to be doing. The security guard said they charge for the tests.

  4. Just logged onto their Website. It lists Peir 11, South St. corner Wall St. as one of their mobile testing locations. Seems like a great lab, fully credentialed, and offering quick results. Bravo to them for offering this community service!

    • I just couldn’t figure out how to make an appointment. Few locations list appointments (Pier 11 is one) but the word is not linkable on my iPad. This location is great to know, wonder why they haven’t publicized.

  5. The Fidi location seems to be a bit quicker as far as the wait for sign up and actual test. I went at 10:45 yesterday morning to sign up and there was zero wait. A guard outside signs you up on an iPad. I was texted to come back at 3:45 and was in and out in less than 15 minutes. Yes the wait was 5 hours but if you live nearby it’s no big deal.

    And I think Michael Huber is right. We noticed on our insurance statements that they are charging $300 for these tests. If you look at places you pay out of pocket for testing it’s usually around $150. There is no cost to the patient at CityMD, but that’s quite a profitable 15 minute appointment.

  6. I made a vaccination appointment at 12.15 a.m. last Thursday at 125 Worth Street being eligible by virtue of age. My wife came too and did not have an appointment (but was also eligible by age), but they took her as well and we both got our first shot of Moderna vaccine. It was extremely well organized and efficient and the staff were excellent. I think we were out of there in about 30 minutes. I do not think they are taking any walk-ins at 125 Worth now and appointments are hard to get but can be found if you are prepared to travel.