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Hundreds line up in North Huntsville for coronavirus testing

The hospital will move the drive-thru testing site the rest of the week.

Posted: Jul 21, 2020 5:57 PM
Updated: Jul 21, 2020 6:09 PM

Hundreds of people lined up at a North Huntsville church, waiting for coronavirus tests. On Tuesday and the rest of the week, Huntsville Hospital is taking its drive-thru testing site on the road.

The hospital was at Union Chapel Missionary Baptist Church on Winchester Road until 1 p.m. Tuesday.

Some people waited about one and a half hours in line to get tested for coronavirus. The hospital said it can take up to seven days for them to get results and until they know if they're positive or negative, they have to stay in quarantine.

Joyce Thomas, Huntsville Hospital's Manager of Emergency Preparedness, said the hospital had more than 300 coronavirus tests ready on Tuesday.

"We just want to make it readily available. There were some senior persons that has problems driving. We sure didn't want them on the road trying to get to us, so we wanted to bring it back up here to North Huntsville," she said.

She said although the line looked long, it was about the same amount of cars that showed up at John Hunt Park recently.

"Here you have a visual, you can see out in the parking lot. It looks like a lot more people, but right now, the numbers are kind of stacking up the same," Thomas said.

She explained the heat was the biggest challenge. Workers need to wear personal protective equipment to interact with patients.

"We are struggling with the heat because you're in gown, face mask, two pair of gloves, a shield and a plastic gown. It's hot," she added.

The number of people getting tested each day fluctuates, but Thomas hopes we're starting to see a positive impact from mandatory masking that started in Madison County exactly two weeks ago.

Thomas reminded anyone who comes to get tested this week to be prepared.

"Bring your insurance card, your ID and get in line. Of course, make sure you have plenty of gas and have some water to drink as well. It's very hot out here," she said.

For a list of the other locations for the testing this week, click HERE.

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