District 2 Public Health is working to help its healthcare partners keep up with increased demand for COVID-19 testing amid the fourth surge of cases of the virus in northeast Georgia.
Natasha Young, public information officer with District 2, said they are currently averaging between 150 to 300 tests per day between their six COVID-19 testing locations. She said this is a large increase over the period prior to the fourth surge.
Two of the health department’s COVID-19 testing sites have recently been revamped in the wake of this increased demand. Specifically, the Gainesville testing site at Sherwood Plaza is now open five days a week, while the new site at Northeast Georgia Medical Center in Braselton is open six days a week.
“We wanted to make testing more accessible and help ease the testing burden from the hospitals and urgent care centers due to the increase in cases from the Delta variant,” Young said.
Young said about 90 people were tested for COVID-19 at the Braselton site on Sept. 10 and 11, while about 100 people were tested per day at the Gainesville location last week.
Both facilities are drive-thru sites, allowing for people to get tested without getting out of their vehicle. For more information about getting tested at a District 2 Public Health testing site, visit their website here.
Young said testing is recommended immediately for anyone experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. Anyone who has had a known or suspected exposure to COVID-19 should also be tested, according to Young.
“People who are fully vaccinated should get tested three to five days after exposure,” Young said. “Unvaccinated individuals should quarantine and be tested immediately after being [exposed].”