Atlanta airport surge test site to identify spread of coronavirus

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Adams, speaking alongside Kemp on the new test site on Monday, said that “when you reopen” whether it’s schools, sports or jobs, “it’s not so you have a positive test, that’s when you test positive. ”

“We have to catch [the cases], we have to isolate them, ”he said.

10/08/2020 - College Park, Georgia - U.S. Vice Admiral General Jerome M. Adams speaks during a press conference at a drive-thru COVID-19 testing clinic located in a paid parking lot at the airport Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International at College Park, Monday August 10, 2020 (ALYSSA POINTER / ALYSSA.POINTER@AJC.COM)

10/08/2020 – College Park, Georgia – U.S. Vice Admiral General Jerome M. Adams speaks during a press conference at a drive-thru COVID-19 testing clinic located in a paid parking lot at the airport Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International at College Park, Monday August 10, 2020 (ALYSSA POINTER / [email protected])

Credit: [email protected]

Credit: [email protected]

Georgia reported 2,429 new net coronavirus cases and 30 new confirmed net deaths on Monday. To date, more than 219,000 confirmed cases of the disease have been reported in the state, along with 4,229 deaths.

Georgia reported a week-over-week increase in cases in nine out of 10 weeks from early May to mid-July, peaking at 25,471 cases the week of July 12. Over the next three weeks, Georgia reported a slight drop in weekly cases, but the seven-day moving average remains more than five times the level reported in early June.

Health experts told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that Georgia needs to continue expanding its testing and test processing capabilities to help quickly identify cases and isolate people to limit the spread. Many residents complained of waiting days for testing appointments and waiting for a week to two weeks for results. These long waits increase the chances that people can spread the virus before they know they are infected.

Georgia last week reported nearly 202,000 tests performed in the seven days ending Saturday, a weekly high and a 7% increase from the previous week. The seven-day moving average of test positivity fell 14% on July 23.

The White House task force recommends a mandate for the public to wear masks in coronavirus hotspots and, “optimally”, statewide.

The task force report recommends that Georgia close bars, nightclubs and entertainment venues and limit dining inside restaurants to less than 25% of their capacity. Other recommendations include strengthening testing and contact tracing and weekly testing of workers and residents of long-term care facilities.

Kemp encouraged people to wear masks, but backed down from a mask warrant. He sued Atlanta over a mask requirement and the action taken by Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms to quash plans to reopen because they conflicted with his orders. Kemp also resisted the reintroduction of stricter restrictions on businesses.

The airport’s temporary surge site, with the capacity to test 5,000 people for COVID-19 per day, opened at 1800 Sullivan Rd. In College Park. The new lot was completed earlier this year to add more parking at the Atlanta airport, but it’s no longer needed with air travel still down nearly 70%.

Instead, its rows of spaces, with canopies to provide shade, have been turned into lanes for motorists to line up for free weekday coronavirus tests from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. until August 26. Self-administered nasal swab tests are open. to anyone in Georgia, regardless of symptoms, with results available in 48 to 72 hours, according to the Georgia Department of Public Health.

DPH recommends that those interested in getting tested register online and make an appointment at doineedacovid19test.com. More than 800 pre-registered for Monday.

Adams said the surge testing sites, which have also opened in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Bakersfield, California and Miami, “give you visibility into areas where the virus is spreading.”

“There’s the state, there’s the county, and then there’s sometimes street by street,” Adams said. Widespread testing allows officials to better see when the virus is spreading in groups of people such as the homeless, areas near a nursing home, or people of a particular ethnicity, he said. declared.

“Most of the people who spread it in the community don’t know they have it. And so once they know it, they can hopefully take steps to isolate or limit their chances of spreading to others, ”Adams said.

You cannot test your way to resolve the problem. The tests show you the problem.

– American General Surgeon Jerome Adams

Hartsfield-Jackson chief executive John Selden originally said the plan was to hold tests for airport workers, but that plan has grown to be much broader. The US Department of Health and Human Services provided clinical staff and testing supplies, the airport provided the space, and state officials manage the site.

When asked if the planned 12 days of surge testing was enough to make a difference, Adams said it “could be long enough” to help turn the tide with preventative measures such as wearing masks and social distancing. But he also encouraged the state and county to reassess the 12-day period.

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