COVINGTON, Ga. — The number of cases of COVID-19 in Georgia continued to rise Monday as the state continues to ramp up its testing for the virus.
Georgia now has 7,558 cases of COVID-19 leading to 1,393 hospitalizations and 294 deaths. Newton County is up to 65 cases and two deaths.
While the numbers continue to increase, much of that can be attributed to the increase in testing over the past week. The state partnered with CVS Health to open a new drive-thru testing facility on the campus of Georgia Tech Monday which will be able to process up to 1,000 tests daily.
“Increased access to rapid testing remains one of our top priorities in order to identify more cases, get Georgians the care they need and prevent further infection in our communities,” Gov. Brian Kemp said Monday morning.
“This unique, public-private partnership will strengthen our testing capability as we continue to take the fight to COVID-19 in Georgia, and we are grateful for CVS Health’s support to stop the spread of the virus.”
The testing facility, located at a parking deck at 352 Peachtree Place NW on Tech’s campus, will be able to accommodate multiple lanes of cars at one time. Testing will only be done by appointment but will be open seven days a week. Patients must preregister to get a same-day appointment at cvs.com/minuteclinic/covid-19-testing.
Georgia Department of Public Health Spokeswoman, Nancy Nydam, spoke with Walton Tribune Publisher David Clemons on Monday to answer some common questions asked by readers of The Tribune and The Covington News.
Nydam told The Tribune fewer than 1 in 4 tests for COVID-19 in Georgia come back positive for the illness.
According to Nydam, the state lab has returned 459 positive cases out of the 2,497 tests for the illness caused by the novel coronavirus while commercial labs, such as Quest Diagnostics and LabCorp, have returned 7,099 positive tests out of 28,777.
Fulton County became the first county to top 1,000 cases on Monday, clocking in with 1,053 cases by the DPH’s 7 p.m. update. Dougherty, in southwest Georgia, had the second-most cases at 722. Dougherty has recorded 44 deaths — the most of any county in the state.
The state health lab is now getting results back in 24 to 48 hours, depending on how long a facility returns specimens. Nydam said commercial labs are running a week or longer to report results.
Nydam also told The Tribune there was no accurate way to track how many people have recovered form COVID-19.