Fulton County health officials open 'neighborhood' COVID-19 test site

The Fulton County Board of Health launched its first "neighborhood testing site" this week. 

In an effort to expand testing for COVID-19, the Fulton County Board of Health launched its first "neighborhood testing site" on Wednesday. 

From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. people can simply walk up to the McGhee Tennis Center on Beecher Court SW and get tested for free.  

"Most of these testing sites have been large-scale, drive-thru operations that enable us to do a large number of people in a very short period of time very safely, but unfortunately, that requires people to have a car," explained Dr. David Holland, chief clinical officer for the Fulton County Board of Health. "Not everybody that needs testing has access to a car. We don't want everybody that's sick packing into MARTA or into Uber or Lyft and going to one of our sites. So, we need to bring the testing to them."

Steven Satterfield lives down the street from the tennis center and took the short drive to get tested Wednesday morning.

"This is a great way to do it because you know, you're in the community. People don't have to take the bus if they don't have a car, transportation," Satterfield said. "This should've been done."

Health officials did not do a lot of pre-publicity for the event but said they hope the word will get out. They urge anyone experiencing fever, headache, shortness of breath, and loss of smell or taste to get tested for coronavirus.

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"We can do a lot of tests in a short period of time. So, if we were really going, if we could do somewhere between 200 and 400 tests on a given day at one of the mobile site, I would consider that a great success," Holland said.  

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The neighborhood testing will be back at McGhee Tennis Center Thursday, but will likely move to a new location on Friday. 

For more details, call the Fulton County BOH COVID-19 Hotline at 404-613-8150.

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