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Tallahassee Memorial Hospital's drive-thru COVID-19 sample collection site opens

Posted at 5:31 PM, Mar 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-18 18:09:35-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — The parking lot at Northwood Centre took on additional importance Wednesday.

Seeking to expedite the COVID-19 screening process, a temporary screening station for Tallahassee Memorial Hospital opened there.

It will operate from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday, allowing anyone with a prescription to be tested by giving a mouth swab.

On average, it takes four to five days for those test results to come back. As a precaution, those tested are being asked to self-isolate at home.

Stephen Flager says the easy access testing is something that he hopes will be very beneficial to the community.

"I think anything that can get as many people into a testing center as possible, because this is one of those situations where you need a lot of testing because you need discovery," said Flager.

Although it's brand new, it's already easing concerns about the virus.

"I think its excellent," said Debbie Paul, a Tallahassee resident. "I think TMH has been very responsive to the community and their needs. The fact that during the time of uncertainty they're giving people a place and a strategy to go is very stress relieving."

TMH says if you are experiencing flu-like symptoms you should reach out to your primary care doctor.

The drive-thru is supported by TMH, Bond Community Health Center, Capital Health Plan, Capital Regional Medical Center, Center for Healthy Aging, FSU College of Medicine, LabCorp, Leon County Health Department, Neighborhood Medical Center, North Florida Medical Centers, Patients First, Quest Diagnostics, Tallahassee Primary Care Associates, as well as logistical and operational support from the City of Tallahassee.