Harrisburg, PA – ( WHTM) Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine announced that beginning Tuesday, October 13, an outdoor testing clinic will be held in the Front Street parking lot at FirstEnergy Stadium in Berks County to contain the recent rapid increase in COVID-19 cases.
“Since the beginning of September, we have seen an increase of 1,469 cases in Berks County, which gives us significant cause for concern,” Dr. Levine said. “These testing sites will be open to anyone who feels they need a test. It is important that even people with no symptoms who test positive isolate and quarantine to stop the spread of COVID-19.”
The department has signed a contract with AMI Expeditionary Healthcare (AMI) to provide testing in communities in need across Pennsylvania. Already, AMI deployed to Centre, Columbia and Indiana counties to perform community testing.
The department decides which counties to deploy testing based on the total number of confirmed cases in the last 14 days per 100,000 people as well as where outbreaks are happening, county population, and other metrics.
This week, Berks has the twelfth-highest percent-positivity at 4.7 percent. This is up from a percent-positivity of 3.9 percent the previous week. The department believes that increased testing in the county will assist in determining the prevalence of the virus and assist the county in moving forward. Other concerning counties, identified as those with percent positives above five percent, can be found on the Early Warning Monitoring Dashboard. Each county bears watching as the state continues to monitor all available data.
The schedule for testing is 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM on:
- Tuesday, October 13;
- Wednesday, October 14; and
- Thursday, October 15.
The schedule for testing is 7:00 AM to 5:30 PM on:
- Friday, October 16; and
- Saturday, October 17.
The address for Berks County testing is FirstEnergy Stadium, 1900 Centre Avenue, Reading, PA, 19605.
Up to 440 patients can be tested per day. Testing is on a first-come, first-serve basis and is at no cost to those being tested. Patients are not required to show symptoms of COVID-19 in order to be tested. No appointment is necessary, but patients should bring a photo-ID and insurance card. Registration will also be completed on-site. The turnaround time for testing results is two to seven days after testing.
Individuals who are tested should self-isolate while they await test results. For those individuals who live with other people, they should self-isolate in a private room and use a private bathroom if possible. Whoever else lives in the home with the individual awaiting test results should also stay at home. The department has additional instructions for individuals waiting for a COVID-19 test result.
For the latest information for individuals, families, businesses and schools, visit “Responding to COVID-19” on pa.gov.
The Wolf Administration stresses the role Pennsylvanians play in helping to reduce the spread of COVID-19:
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
- Cover any coughs or sneezes with your elbow, not your hands.
- Clean surfaces frequently.
- Stay home to avoid spreading COVID-19, especially if you are unwell.
- If you must go out, you are required to wear a mask when in a business or where it is difficult to maintain proper social distancing.
- Download the COVID Alert PA app and make your phone part of the fight. The free app can be found in the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store by searching for “covid alert pa.