On Thursday, the Gwinnett, Newton & Rockdale County Health Departments will open a large drive-through COVID-19 testing site at the Georgia International Horse Park in Conyers. Due to increased testing capacity, up to 300 appointments are now being scheduled for anyone who thinks they may be ill with COVID-19. While the Health Department requires a scheduled appointment to test individuals, referral from a doctor is not necessary.
“We look forward to piloting this large-scale test site,” Dr. Audrey Arona, district health director and CEO of Gwinnett, Newton and Rockdale County Health Departments, said. “This is a fantastic collaboration between Rockdale and Newton County Governments, their EMAs, and the Health Department. Testing will provide individuals in the community an opportunity to learn if their illness is consistent with the COVID-19 virus, and it will help us improve our plans for providing large-scale testing.”
Since the Health Department first started testing on March 17, over 1,100 have been tested. Initially, testing was only available to first responders, elderly individuals with chronic medical conditions as well as their caregivers, and individuals living or working in a congregate setting (i.e. nursing homes, long-term care facilities, etc). Now that laboratory capacity to process the tests has increased, the Health Department is opening testing to any sick individual in the general public who thinks they may be ill with COVID-19.
To ensure enough test kits are available, the Health Department will only test individuals that have a scheduled appointment. Interested individuals should call 770-513-5631 to find out if they’re eligible and to schedule a time for their appointment. Transportation to and from the testing site is required.
A medical provider will collect a nasal swab while the individual remains in his or her vehicle. Test results will be available around 48 hours after the swab is collected. Health Department staff will call individuals who receive a positive result; however, all individuals tested can retrieve their test results via the LapCorp patient portal. Instructions will be provided before individuals leave the testing location.
More information is available on the Health Department’s website at www.gnrhealth.com/covid-19-info. Additional information about COVID-19 can be found at https://dph.georgia.gov andwww.cdc.gov/covid-19.