Friday morning, 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 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.
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.