Eight more days of free COVID-19 testing were announced Monday by Grays Harbor Public Health.
Oakville, Westport, Pacific Beach, Cosmopolis and Ocean Shores have been added to the locations where the National Guard will test anyone wishing to be tested. A fourth day of testing in Aberdeen has also been scheduled.
Oct. 15: Oakville fire station, noon to 6 p.m.
Oct. 16: Ocosta High School in Westport, 8 am. to 2 p.m.
Oct. 17: Ocosta High School in Westport, 9 a.m to 3 p.m.
Oct. 20: Fire District #8 station in Pacific Beach, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Oct. 21: Lion’s Club in Cosmopolis, 1-6 p.m.
Oct. 22: Ocean Shores Convention Center, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Oct. 23: Ocean Shores Convention Center, noon to 6 p.m.
Oct. 24: Stewart Field/Robert Gray Elementary School parking lot, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
There are few requirements to be tested for COVID-19 during this community based testing. This testing site is open to anyone who needs or wants a COVID-19 test. People under the age of 18 are required to be accompanied by an adult. A valid phone number and address will be necessary; however, no identification is required. No questions regarding immigration status will be asked. There are no public restrooms at test site locations. Support for testing is available in both English and Spanish at all locations. These sites will be both drive-through and walk-up with no appointment required.
Through the first five National Guard testing dates at Olympic Stadium in Hoquiam and Aberdeen High School, 574 people were tested for COVID-19. There were more tests performed than the health department had expected, which has caused a delay in results. Testing continued at the Elma Fairgrounds Tuesday and is set to wrap up there Wednesday.
The National Guard testing crew has its own on-site lab, which can test up to 80 a day. “Anything over 80 tests per day are being sent to the Washington State Public Health Lab,” said Nicklaus Falley, public information officer for the county’s incident management team.
As far as reporting goes, “Tests on site are now being prioritized and result times may vary,” said a public health statement Monday.
“Grays Harbor Public Health is handling positive tests at the community based testing site equally to all other positive tests,” said Falley. “Once notification is received, an investigation is launched and added to the total cases.”
Cases updated Tuesday
Monday, an additional 27 cases were reported, with one additional case Tuesday. It is unknown how many, if any, came from the first five days of National Guard community based testing. As of Tuesday, the case count had topped 600 — 603 — with 161 active contact investigations, and 76 cases under quarantine or isolation.
The rate of cases over the previous two weeks per 100,000 population, as of Oct. 8 (the most current data available as the Department of Health wrestled with a “data issue” that slowed reporting), was 182, far above the state goal of 25 or less.
For further comparison, the rates over the previous two weeks are significantly lower in most of the counties neighboring Grays Harbor. The number in Pacific County was 41.6 per 100,000, not taking into consideration two new positive tests reported Monday. Thurston County’s number of 45.1; Mason County’s 97; and Jefferson County at zero. Lewis County has seen a rise in cases and its number as of Oct. 8 is 145.9 cases per 100,000 population.