Next week the Orange County Florida Department of Health will roll out five mobile coronavirus testing sites designed to target underserved areas of the county and COVID-19 hot spots, the county announced.
The first site will open Monday at Kay Blanchard Park and four additional sites, at Camping World Stadium, South Econ Community Park, Barnett Park and West Orange Park will open throughout the rest of the week.
Tests are free and anyone over 18 can be tested with or without symptoms but they need to make an appointment.
“There is no cost associated with this testing. The state will assume the cost. We are testing individuals 18 and older. We are not testing younger than 18 because of parental consent that will be needed and we need to speed the process,” Orange County Health Officer Dr. Raul Pino said. "We are not checking IDs, we are not checking identities. We are taking names, no phone numbers during our reservations.”
Residents can make an appointment by calling the DOH-Orange’s COVID-19 Call Center at 407-723-5004 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. The center will begin accepting calls on Thursday, county officials said. County leaders said anyone who doesn’t have access to one of the sites but believes they need to be tested can contact the county and try to make special arrangements.
The new locations were selected because they are near areas of the county with high numbers of COVID-19 cases, according to the county. The county is also hoping to test individuals in underserved areas without access to transportation.
There are more than 1,000 people in the county who have tested positive for the respiratory illness, however, there are certain zip codes with a concentration of cases known as “hot spots” or zones for coronavirus within the county.
In Orange County, the zip codes with more than 40 cases each include 32824, 32822, 32837 and 32828.
[INTERACTIVE MAP: Here’s where to get your drive-thru coronavirus test]
Orange County Commissioner Mayra Uribe said zip code 32822 is included in her district and she’d like to see a testing site there.
“I feel that not enough people are going to go get tested who may have the symptoms who are walking around the community every day,” she said.
Pino first mentioned the need for mobile testing in the county last week.
“The idea is to reach out to individuals who normally don’t engage with health care and don’t have transportation, and also get a better picture of those areas getting hardest hit,” Pino said.
Pino said the Department of Health can test between 250 to 300 patients a day without exhausting staffing resources. Testing activities will sustain as long as supplies last, according to a news release.
Below are the testing site addresses and opening dates:
- April 20– Jay Blanchard Park, 2451 N. Dean Road, Orlando, FL 32817
- April 21 – South Econ Community Park, 3800 S. Econlockhatchee Trial, Orlando, FL 32829
- April 22 – Camping World Stadium,1 Citrus Bowl Place, Orlando, FL 32805
- April 23 – Barnett Park, 4801 W. Colonial Drive, Orlando, FL 32808
- April 24 – West Orange Park, 150 Windermere Road, Winter Garden, FL 34787
Pino said patients can walk, bike, take public transportation or drive their vehicle to the sites, which will be open rain or shine. He expects testing to wrap up by 3 p.m. each day.
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