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Bluestone Health Center to offer drive-thru COVID-19 testing

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PRINCETON, WV (WVVA) -- 4 of 5 Bluestone Health Center locations are already testing for the Coronavirus. On Friday, they'll collect tests via drive-thru.

"We can test more patients and we don't have to change our equipment, we can just keep it on and they go through," explained CEO Linda Hutchens.

Because Bluestone Health Center is a primary care facility, patients won't have to bring a outpatient physician's order. Healthcare workers will be on hand to evaluate your symptoms right from the car.

"There's a nurse here that will do the screening and she'll make sure you meet the guidelines, and if you do, then they would have you drive around to the back to the tent I'll be at," said Sabrina Huffman, FNP-BC at Bluestone Health. "We'll test you for the flu first so that we can rule out any other reasons for the symptoms you're having, and as long as you test negative for the flu, we'll proceed with the COVID-19 swab."

But because testing equipment is still hard to get, BCH will follow the CDC Guidelines regarding who should be tested; meaning you must show symptoms of COVID-19 or be at 'high risk.'

"If you have symptoms of a fever, which is considered greater than 100.4, with cough and shortness of breath, then that means you are symptomatic," Huffman explained. "People who have just been exposed to someone but are not symptomatic would not meet criteria for testing until they become symptomatic."

People considered high risk include people older than 60, pregnant women, and high risk workers; such as healthcare workers, law enforcement, and grocery workers.

Hutchens added that she hopes to bring drive-thru testing to every Bluestone Health Center location in the coming weeks.

"The more we test, the more we can know what's going on in Mercer County and that is our goal," she said.

Friday's drive-thru testing service will be held from 10AM - 2PM at the Kegley location; 3997 Beckley Rd, Princeton, WV 24740.

Jade Burks

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