U.S. District Court, SHIELD Illinois, and Chicago Department of Public Health to Host SHIELD Community Testing Site at Dirksen U.S. Courthouse

January 10, 2022

Testing Site Opens Wednesday, January 12, 2022

The United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, in partnership with SHIELD Illinois and the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH), will be hosting a free COVID-19 community testing site in the lobby of the Dirksen U.S. Courthouse beginning Wednesday, January 12, 2022.   

Starting, January 12, 2022, COVID-19 tests will be available Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (closed Federal Holidays). An appointment is required and can be made through the SHIELD portal (use agency code: df5brbrj).  Though the testing clinic does not open until January 12, 2022, individuals may logon to register beginning Monday, January 10, 2022.  In order to test, individuals will need to provide information in the SHIELD online registration process, where they can book an appointment.  Starting January 12, 2022, a computer will also be available on site to enable any individual who lacks internet access to create an account and book an appointment. 

Developed at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, SHIELD Illinois’ highly accurate PCR test requires only a small amount of saliva from an individual and provides results within 24-48 hours. Individuals may not eat, drink, or put anything in their mouth for one hour before taking the saliva-based test. This includes smoking, drinking, chewing gum, using mouthwash, etc.  The test is available for anyone, but some children under 5 years of age may have difficulty producing a saliva sample. 

“With the increased number of COVID-19 cases and rise in the highly transmissible Omicron variant in Illinois, our community has a great need for convenient, fast, and free COVID-19 testing,” said Chief Judge Rebecca R. Pallmeyer. “The Dirksen Courthouse stands in downtown Chicago and serves the public. In light of our mission, and our proximity to public transportation and government and private office buildings, the Courthouse is an ideal location to offer testing to members of the public. 

“The Court has had great success with SHIELD testing for courthouse employees, case participants, and potential jurors. Regularly testing large numbers of people will help our community better contain COVID-19 cases and return to more normal activities. We invite members of the public to make an appointment for a SHIELD screening.” 

CDPH is utilizing funds from the federal CARES Act to fund community testing at this site.  

Since February 2021, the District Court has paid for and administered over 24,000 SHIELD tests at the Dirksen Courthouse for jurors, case participants, and employees of the Courthouse.  The Court has also sponsored two COVID-19 walk-up vaccine clinics, one in June/July 2021 and one in December 2021, at the Dirksen Courthouse for members of the public. 


Where:  Dirksen U.S. Courthouse Lobby, South entrance 

219 S. Dearborn Street 

Chicago, Illinois 

When:   Clinic opens Wednesday, January 12, 2022, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

Who:     Members of the public who wish to be tested must book an appointment through the SHIELD portal (use agency code df5brbrj).  An on-site computer will also be available for registration. Individuals should not eat, drink, or put anything in their mouth one hour before taking the saliva-based test. This includes smoking, drinking, chewing gum, using mouthwash, etc. 

Set up a SHIELD account at: https://shieldillinoisportal.pointnclick.com/login_login.aspx  

  • Use agency codedf5brbrj 


About SHIELD Illinois:  SHIELD Illinois is a non-profit unit of the University of Illinois System that utilizes the saliva-based PCR COVID-19 test developed by the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). The test is able to detect SARS-CoV-2 and its variants in symptomatic, pre-symptomatic, and asymptomatic individuals, with results in less than 24-48 hours. SHIELD Illinois has performed more than 3 million tests across the state, protecting schools, colleges and universities, businesses, and government agencies. 

Answers to frequently asked questions about SHIELD Illinois can be found here.