As the COVID-19 case numbers continue to see an increase, counties across the Western Slope are ramping up testing.
Delta County Public Health has set up multiple testing sites across the county for the public to access should they exhibit or come in contact with someone who has the virus.
The public should check with their primary care physician’s office prior to making an appointment.
“Testing is available for those intending to travel,” according to information on the DCPH website. “Testing is also available for asymptomatic, but priority is given to symptomatic individuals, or for people who have been exposed to an individual who tested positive.”
Delta County testing sites:
COVID-19 testing is available by appointment only. People who are experiencing symptoms or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 can seek out testing at the following locations:
— Delta County Health Department (255 W. 6th Street, in Delta) by calling 970-874-2172
— Delta County Memorial Hospital’s Urgent Care (Stafford Avenue, west of the hospital)
— North Fork EMS (110 E. Hotchkiss Avenue, in Hotchkiss)
— With your primary care doctor
Testing is free and available at the Hotchkiss site Monday and Wednesday mornings by appointment only. Prior to arrival, the public is encouraged to call 970-778-7426 to schedule an appointment. People can also create a lab account online at https://tinyurl.com/MakoCOVID where they will receive their results. Mako Medical can also text test results when people opt-in to receive their results by texting “MAKO” to 66349.
People also need to register at https://tinyurl.com/co-delta-13665 before going to North Fork EMS. After filling out the form, create a “EREQ” number. Print a copy of the form, take a screenshot, write down the EREQ number and bring that information to the appointment. The EREQ number is needed to identify a person’s sample and process the results.
Montrose County also has options for the public to seek testing. Montrose Memorial Hospital’s COVID-19 testing site at the Montrose County Fairgrounds and Events Center recently began administering curative tests (oral swabs), rather than the nasopharyngeal test (nasal swabs). Twenty minutes prior to the oral swab sample collection, people cannot eat or drink, according to the Montrose County website.
A person is notified of results within one to two days, typically. The fairgrounds testing site is open Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.
A person needs a referral from a primary care physician or Montrose County Public Health prior to going to a testing site.
The public can also contact Montrose County’s Public Health Information Line at 970-252-4545 to visit with local public health staff. Press option 4 to speak with a Spanish-speaking staff member. The information line is staffed Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Montrose County testing sites:
— Pavilion Family Medicine (1804 E Pavilion Place, in Montrose) offers PCR (nasal swabs) COVID-19 testing Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Contact: 970-249-6670
— PIC Place (87 Merchant Drive, in Montrose) offers drive-through PCR (nasal swab) testing for new and established patients. Isolated indoor testing is available for people experiencing symptoms. Hours: Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Contact: 970-252-8896
— Peak Professionals (1550 Niagara Road, in Montrose) offers nasal swab testing to people who are symptomatic or have been exposed to the virus. Testing is available Monday through Sunday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Contact: 970-497-7920
— River Valley Family Health Center (1010 S Rio Grande Avenue, in Montrose) offers drive-through and walk-up nasal swab and antibody COVID-19 testing to new and existing patients of River Valley Family Health Center. Hours vary. Contact: 970-497-3333
Mesa County recently began administering curative tests (oral swabs) at the Mesa County Fairgrounds.
Colorado Mesa University is another testing location. Through a partnership with CMU and COVIDCheck Colorado, this secondary site provides additional testing capacity for Mesa County Public Health, beyond the Fairgrounds location. People have to reserve their testing times at CMU in advance through the online scheduling system. The university’s testing is not offered on a first-come, first-served basis. CMU’s site became available earlier than originally scheduled after CMU officials opened up their testing resources to the county a week early as they transitioned students to online instruction.
Health care clinics also offer testing within Mesa County. Contact your healthcare provider to see what is available.
Coronavirus testing is also available for children under age 3 and people who have transportation or other access issues to the fairgrounds testing site. The public is encouraged to contact Mesa County Public Health at 970-248-6900 to make special arrangements.
Mesa County testing sites:
— Mesa County Fairgrounds (2785 US-50, Grand Junction, CO 81503): Open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Test results come back in approximately two days. Pre-registration is recommended for this location, which can be done at https://tinyurl.com/MesaCounty.
— Colorado Mesa University (1280 Cannell Avenue): Open Monday through Friday from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Test results come back in approximately 2-4 days. Pre-registration is required and can be completed at https://tinyurl.com/CMUtest.
Several additional locations also offer COVID-19 testing in the area. Contact your primary care physician’s office for more information about COVID-19 testing and costs. More sites can also be found online at https://tinyurl.com/localCOVID. If you do not have a primary care provider, contact your local public health department.
While the length of this pandemic is still uncertain, the Centers for Disease Control encourages people to remain vigilant. There are three important ways to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus:
— Wear a mask to protect yourself and others and stop the spread of COVID-19
— Stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms lengths) from others who don’t live with you, particularly in crowded areas
— Wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol
During outings, the CDC encourages the following behaviors to protect oneself: wearing a face covering over your nose and mouth, staying socially distanced (6 feet apart) and avoiding crows, avoid indoor spaces as much as possible and wash your hands often.