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Increased testing options pop up as COVID-19 surge continues

Published: Sep. 27, 2021 at 5:51 PM EDT
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STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV) - When COVID-19 cases surged, testing became vitally important, and increased need put a strain on available resources.

“Testing is scarce around here,” said Rebekah Saunders, owner of Dynamic Diagnostic.

However, many health professionals believe testing for COVID-19 is one of the keys to ending the pandemic.

“The sooner that someone has been exposed to a close contact who recently tested positive or they have symptoms of COVID-19, the sooner and individual that they’ve tested positive, the sooner they can quarantine and isolate as necessary,” Jordi Shelton with the Central Shenandoah Health District said.

Shelton says testing is available at the Government Center in Verona every Tuesday and Friday, and at Hillandale Park in Harrisonburg on Mondays and Thursdays.

“You don’t have to make an appointment, it’s totally walk-in, drive-in for testing, so you just show up,” Shelton said.

Testing through the health district is currently only for people who have symptoms or who have been exposed.

“If you need a COVID-19 test for your employer or to travel, this is not the place you’d want to go,” Shelton said.

Saunders says she saw a need for more testing, so Dynamic Diagnostic expanded their options.

“We figured alright, let’s go ahead and help out a little bit and start doing more and more testing in our community instead of just testing at larger events,” Saunders said.

They hosted a pop-up drive-thru testing option Monday, Sept. 27 at the old Big Lots parking lot in Staunton. Saunders says she thought offering more COVID-19 tests was the best way to help during the surge.

“Our neighbors come first. We wanted to make sure everyone had a chance to get tested, and then also could stay safe,” Saunders said.

Shelton says the health district has seen an increased need for tests.

“We have seen a demand in our area again as cases are rising. Folks are looking for opportunities to get quick convenient testing,” Shelton said. “There are some clinics where we’ll see upwards of 70 people coming to test, so there’s definitely a need for it.”

Testing with Dynamic Diagnostic is $50 without insurance.

“We didn’t want anyone to say I can’t afford to get tested, so we dropped our rates tremendously so everybody could afford it,” Saunders said.

Dynamic Diagnostics also offers at-home testing.

“For people who can’t make it out if they’re too sick or something’s going on, they have no way of getting to us, that’s fine. We’ll come to you,” Saunders said.

For information on Dynamic Diagnostic’s popup events, visit their Facebook page.

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