New coronavirus testing sites opened in the region on Tuesday, and officials said testing locations for Butler County are expected to be announced later this week.
Drive-through coronavirus testing sites opened at UC Health in Clifton and the University of Dayton . Butler County Health Commissioner Jenny Bailer said during a Facebook Live appearance with Sheriff Richard Jones that locations are coming to the county soon.
“All of hospitals right now are working on setting up testing stations,” Bailer said. “They are going to be outside of their ERs, free-standing, some of them are in large tents, some of them are at separate buildings.”
Her spokeswoman, Erin Smiley, said later that they don’t know when the locations will be announced but it should be later this week.
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Bailer stressed the testing sites are not for just anyone.
“I want to emphasize this is not to do mass testing of all of our populace, we do not need to decide at this point if COVID virus is among us, we know that it already is,” Bailer said. “So these testing sites are set up for people who are sick to get a test. It’s not for everybody to go out and just find out, maybe I have it I’d just like to know. It’s not drive-through testing, it’s not for walk-in testing it’s for people that are sick.”
The UC Health clinic provides tests by appointment only, either made by the patient’s doctor or by calling 513-418-4787 for an appointment.
“We know that people are concerned about COVID-19 and we have been working to ensure that we have resources in place to respond to their concerns and give them access to testing, if appropriate,” Dr. Evie Alessandrini, UC Health senior vice president and chief medical officer, said. “Additionally, by keeping those being tested in their vehicles during their exam, we can help to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to other patients as well as staff and clinicians.”
The clinic is located under two tents outside the front entrance of the West Professional Building at 3120 Burnet Avenue.
By late morning on Tuesday about 100 people had come to the University of Dayton Arena parking lot for testing. Those being tested must have a doctor’s note saying they meet the criteria and need a test, based on symptoms, contact with someone who has tested positive or because the person has traveled overseas.
Symptoms include a fever, cough and shortness of breath and will occur within two to 14 days of exposure, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Emergency symptoms also include persistent pain or chest pressure, new confusion and bluish lips or face.
Test results at the Dayton testing site could be available within one to two days. The Cincinnati location indicated the window would be three days.
As of Tuesday afternoon there were 67 confirmed cases in 16 counties in Ohio with 17 patients hospitalized. Butler County had six confirmed caes.
The Butler County commissioners declared a state of emergency on Monday and approved a number measures in an effort to limit spread of the disease without curtailing services. The board told Bailer funds would be made available for the effort. She said after the meeting the federal government is supposed to be sending funds but Commissioner Don Dixon said they need to be prepared to do whatever is necessary, immediately.
“What I’ve been saying for the last five years is we have to take care of ourselves, we have to be able to take care of ourselves,” he told the Journal-News. “When you’re dealing with the federal government and state government it’s always the check’s in the mail. But look people deal in cash, they’re not going to wait for somebody to send a check from Washington.”
- Ohio Department of Health hotline: 1-833-4-ASK-ODH (staffed from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. each day)
- ODH updates: coronavirus.ohio.gov
- Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services helpline: 1-877-275-6364
- National Alliance on Mental Illness Butler County hotline: 1-844-4CRISIS
- Ohio crisis text line: Text keyword "4HOPE" to 741 741
- Complete Journal-News coverage: bit.ly/coronavirusjn
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