The innovative saliva-based test developed by the COVID-19 SHIELD: Target, Test, Tell team is available for the general public through SHIELD CU, a program offered in partnership with OSF HealthCare.

Two apps. One test.

Safer Illinois app cover art

Safer Illinois

  • On-campus testing
  • Illinois faculty, staff, students

Safer Community app cover art

Safer Community

  • SHIELD CU community testing
  • Community groups, including families and households of university employees and students

SHIELD CU is a partnership program to reduce our community COVID-19 positivity rate, keep it low and allow our schools, businesses and activities to safely stay open. Visit for more information.

Getting tested

SHIELD CU uses the saliva-based test invented at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Unlike conventional nasal testing, saliva samples are collected non-invasively.


The test is available to all individuals eight years of age or older.


Testing is free of charge and insurance will not be billed. 

Enrollment with the Safer Community App

Get it on Google PlayDownload on the App Store

Download the Safer Community App and enter your phone number or email to get started. The Safer Community app is distinct from the Safer Illinois app used for University of Illinois faculty, staff and students. 

The Testing Process

Commmunity members will use the designated SHIELD CU line staffed by OSF HealthCare at the testing site and check in using the Safer Community App.

Because of differences in the way samples are identified and matched, faculty, staff, and students who visit a campus testing site with their families will need to check in and test separately from their family members (including minors). Only faculty, staff and students may test through the campus SHIELD testing program.


Visit for additional information about testing, test results, support for those who test positive, the Safer Community app, and more.