Families Prepare for COVID-19 Test Results Before Thanksgiving


COVINGTON, KY – As the COVID-19 threat level remains high in all three states, some families are rushing to get tested ahead of Thanksgiving gatherings.

On Wednesday morning, a constant stream of cars drove through the testing ground at the wheel on 4e Covington Street. Karen Epplen and her daughter, Olivia, were two in line.

“Olivia just got home from school,” Epplen said. “She’s having a little cough, and we’re just safe before we go around the grandparents.”

Some online said they were being tested because they were showing symptoms or needed to be tested for work, but many were flying or planning to see local family members on the holiday.

“To ensure our safety and the safety of others we may come into contact with,” said Kevin Kobia, another person online.

The Ohio Department of Health has recommended people get tested before the holidays as another delta wave hits hospitals and more vaccinated residents are suffering from breakthrough infections. Hamilton County public health spokesman Mike Samet urged people to get tested as a precaution.

“If you have people with weakened immune systems, you might want to be extra careful,” Samet said.

RELATED: ODH: Ohio COVID case, hospitalizations “go in the wrong direction”

Gravity Diagnostics provides PCR tests free of charge. These can be more accurate at detecting the virus in people who don’t have symptoms compared to over-the-counter tests. They are available at the drive-thru in Fort. Mitchell, Florence and Covington.

Gravity Diagnostic Field Services Director Jeff Wellens said the team served 612 patients there as of Tuesday. Nurses expected a record number on Wednesday before the holidays.

“Everyone, you know, travels,” Wellens said. “Some people need to travel abroad, they want to go see grandmother and grandfather and have the sensitivity to make sure they are healthy.”

Many airlines require a negative PCR test before certain flights, which costs $ 200 from CVG. Many therefore opt for the free test at a Gravity Diagnostics site. Partnering with the state helps the company cover costs and the lab can process the tests within hours.

“We just completed, over the past week, our 3 millionth COVID test since the start of this pandemic,” Wellens said. “So with this volume, we were obviously able to perfect the process, bring in the right people, bring in the right equipment. “

To see a list of test locations, click here.

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