July 7, 2020
HHS Launches ‘Surge’ COVID-19 Testing in Hotspot Jurisdictions in Florida, Louisiana and Texas
Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is announcing free COVID-19 testing in Jacksonville, Florida; Baton Rouge, Louisiana; and Edinburg, Texas. Surge testing efforts will temporarily increase federal support to communities where there has been a recent and intense level of new cases and hospitalizations related to the ongoing outbreak.
The three jurisdictions identified are seeing significant increases in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations and could potentially benefit from additional opportunities to identify new cases, especially for people who are asymptomatic. HHS, in partnership with eTrueNorth and each of the local communities, will perform surge testing by offering 5,000 tests per-city per-day, at no charge to those tested. The temporary surge testing sites will be live anywhere from five to 12 days. Across the nation, the largest increases in COVID-19 positivity rates continue to be in the 18 to 29 age group; however, there are also upticks in young people under 18 and in people aged 30 to 39.
“The Trump Administration is doubling-down on support to areas hard hit by COVID-19. Standing up surge testing sites is one of many tools we are utilizing now to assist local leadership to reduce community spread,” said Assistant Secretary for Health ADM Brett P. Giroir, M.D. “Data, including positive rates and demographic information, will inform how to shift state and local resources to reduce the occurrence of COVID-19.”
Testing at the surge locations is available to individuals five years and older – including those experiencing symptoms; those who believe they may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 coronavirus; and anyone who is worried about possibly having the virus. Individuals seeking testing do not need to be a resident of the community where these testing sites are located. Individuals under 18 years old must have a parent or legal guardian present to consent to testing.
“People who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 and who are waiting for test results, should self-quarantine for 14 days from the date of exposure,” said Deputy Surgeon General RADM Erica Schwartz, M.D., M.P.H. “They should watch for fever (100.4 degrees), cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19. If possible, they should stay away from others in the household, especially people who are at higher risk for getting sick from COVID-19.”
Surge Testing locations for COVID-19 testing sites beginning Tuesday, July 7:
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Louisiana State University
Alex Box Stadium parking lot
Baton Rouge, LA 70820
FG Clark parking lot
801 Harding Blvd
Baton Rouge, LA 70807
9701 Cortana Pl.
Baton Rouge, LA 70815
Fairgrounds at BREC’s Airline Highway Park
17200 Airline Hwy
Baton Rouge, LA 70118
Note: Baton Rouge will also be performing mobile testing in high-risk communities.
Surge Testing locations beginning Wednesday, July 8:
Bert Ogden Arena (an HEB parking lot)
4900 South I-69C
Edinburg, TX 78542
First Coast High School
590 Duval Station Road
Jacksonville, FL 32218
Regency Mall (Sears building)
9501 Arlington Expressway
Jacksonville FL 32225
Frank H. Peterson Academies
7450 Wilson Blvd
Jacksonville, FL 32210
**Individuals seeking COVID-19 testing at any of these sites should make every effort to pre-register for testing in advance at: www.DoINeedaCOVID19test.com.**
While on-site registration will be accommodated, pre-registration is preferred. Individuals tested at one of these test sites must provide a telephone number and email address. An identification card is NOT required.
Information for Individuals Seeking Testing:
- It should take between 3 and 5 days for someone who is tested to get their results.
- Test results will be provided by email notification (individuals will be required to log back into the website to view their results). There is not a phone number to call for results.
We would like to offer a very special thank you to our partners: the State of Texas, City of Edinburg Hidalgo County, the State of Florida, City of Jacksonville, Duval County, the State of Louisiana, City of Baton Rouge, and East Baton Rouge Parish.