With health officials predicting an increase in COVID-19 cases in the fall and winter, new locations are opening in the Denver metro area to meet the anticipated demand for testing.
On Tuesday, Douglas County and Stride Community Health Center launched a testing program that will offer drive-up testing at locations in Castle Rock, Parker, Lone Tree, and Highlands Ranch. The testing will be offered for free, thanks to federal CARES Act funding.
"We pushed really hard to get these testing sites set up by Sept. 1, with school starting, and with everything reopening we are anticipating an increased need," said Liz Wilkinson, community testing liaison for Stride.
The Douglas County sites will offer nasal swab testing for those with COVID-19 symptoms, people who have had direct exposure and healthcare workers, and first responders.
However, other sites are providing testing regardless of whether patients have symptoms. Colorado COVID-19 Testing recently opened in the old K-Mart parking lot at E. Evans Avenue and S. Monaco Parkway.
"If people think they have been exposed or if they’ve had symptoms , or if they have a worry that they may be exposing themselves to someone who may be in a vulnerable state, we encourage the opportunity to choose to get tested," said Dr. Volin with the Women's Health Group in Thornton. Drive-up testing is also provided at their Thornton office.
Testing at the K-Mart site is covered by most private insurance plans and Medicare. Results are available within 24 to 48 hours and are texted or emailed directly to patients.