BRAZOS COUNTY, TX — Brazos County was the location of one of the free mobile testing sites available around the state on Tuesday.
The response this morning was overwhelming.
Within the first hour of the free mobile tests, the Brazos County Health District announced you must have an appointment to get tested.
The demands for tests is high in Brazos County as the surge of cases continues statewide.
“At the mobile testing site this morning there was a lot of people that showed up. there was an overwhelming response because we have so many cases here in our community,” says Sara Mendez, M.S. health promotion manager, Brazos County Health District.
Less than an hour into Tuesday's free testing site at the Brazos County Expo Center, health officials announced the mobile testing site will be by appointment to ensure those who made an appointment in the last 24 hours were tested.
“When people came who did not have an appointment the staff there did try and get the appointments filled as quickly as possible once those filled up they were no longer able to accept any more walk-ins,” says Mendez.
Only accepting appointments is a trend free mobile testing sites are seeing across the state.
“With the higher availability and more Texans are aware of the mobile sites there has been an increase in the numbers that we are seeing on a daily basis,” says Lieutenant Locas Kindell, US Army National Guard.
The mobile testing site first came to Brazos County in May but since then, the state has switched from the nasal swab to an oral swab; speeding up the testing process and allowing more testing.
“It keeps the cross-contamination level down. It helps with the increase rate and to get people in and out faster,” says Lt. Kindell.
While the free mobile testing site is a state partnership, the Brazos County Health District says they will be in charge of the contact tracing effort.
“When either the state lab or or a private lab does a test that comes back positive those results come back to the health district if it’s someone who lives in Brazos County,” says Mendez.
Over the two day free testing, health officials are predicting they will preform about 650 tests.