Coronavirus Surge-Testing Begins in US Cities
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced ‘surge’ COVID-19 disease testing is now available in Jacksonville, Florida; Baton Rouge, Louisiana; and Edinburg, Texas.
The identified jurisdictions are seeing significant increases in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations and could potentially benefit from additional opportunities to identify new cases, especially for people who are asymptomatic.
HHS, in partnership with eTrueNorth and each of the local communities, will perform surge testing by offering 5,000 tests per-city per-day, at no charge to those tested.
HHS said on July 7, 2020, ‘surge testing efforts will temporarily increase federal support to communities where there has been a recent and intense level of new cases and hospitalizations related to the ongoing outbreak.’
The temporary surge testing sites will be live anywhere from five to 12 days.
“The U.S. Administration is doubling-down on support to areas hard hit by COVID-19. Standing up surge testing sites is one of many tools we are utilizing now to assist local leaders to reduce community spread,” said Assistant Secretary for Health ADM Brett P. Giroir, M.D., in a press statement.
“Data, including positive rates and demographic information, will inform how to shift state and local resources to reduce the occurrence of COVID-19.”
Diagnostic testing at the surge locations is available to individuals 5 years and older – including those experiencing symptoms; those who believe they may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 coronavirus; and anyone who is worried about possibly having the virus.
Individuals seeking testing do not need to be a resident of the community where these testing sites are located.
Individuals under 18 years old must have a parent or legal guardian present to consent to testing.
“People who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 and who are waiting for test results, should self-quarantine for 14 days from the date of exposure,” said Deputy Surgeon General RADM Erica Schwartz, M.D., M.P.H.
“They should watch for fever (100.4 degrees), cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19. If possible, they should stay away from others in the household, especially people who are at higher risk for getting sick from COVID-19.”
Individuals seeking COVID-19 testing at any of these sites should make every effort to pre-register for testing in advance at Do I Need a COVID-19 test.
While on-site registration will be accommodated, pre-registration is preferred. Individuals tested at one of these test sites must provide a telephone number and email address.
An identification card is NOT required.
Surge Testing locations for COVID-19 testing sites began on July 7, 2020.
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