SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Coronavirus testing sites are seeing a surge in demand ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday.
Many people can’t find appointments or they’re waiting in line for hours at urgent care centers just to get tested. Not surprisingly, Sacramento County Health officials said the influx is because people are looking to get tested before family gatherings and travel.
“Hopefully I can get seen today. That’s my only big worry about it,” said Celenne Hamm, a Sacramento resident.
She was camped out at an urgent care in Sacramento County Monday evening.
“They said it would be about like a two and a half hour wait, but they should be able to get me in,” she said.
Her coworker tested positive for COVID-19 and now she needs a test to go back to work. The urgent care was her best option, no appointment necessary.
Sacramento County health officials said there is limited testing available at their 11 community sites as well as the state-sponsored site at Cal Expo. People trying to book appointments through Project Baseline, a free testing service, will likely get a message reading “no more appointments available.”
And if you want results by Thanksgiving Day, it’s probably too late. Health officials said the normal turnaround time is 72 hours.
Pedra Ferguson arrived from Georgia at the Sacramento International Airport Monday night.
“[I’m] spending the holidays with my son. He’s in the military,” she said.
Ferguson is one of several people CBS13 spoke to the airport who opted not to get tested before flying
“It’s just making sure you’re six feet away, make sure your sanitized, wear your mask,” she said.
The mad dash to be confirmed COVID-free for Thanksgiving is leaving others to long waits or nothing at all.
“It’s been very stressful. Very stressful but taking it one day at a time,” Hamm said.
County leaders expect the rush to die down after this week but pick back up again leading into Christmas. They remind people the best way to be safe is that six feet of social distancing and wearing a mask.
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