Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department to Host Drive-Thru Testing for First Responders, Healthcare Workers.
You can view the results of the drive-thru testing site on this infographic. We are waiting to receive 17 more test results. Of the 16 positive cases, 10 are Pierce County residents.
*Percents represent how many people responded yes to each question.
People at higher risk for COVID-19 and those who provide critical services for our community can get tested for the disease at a special testing site in Tacoma beginning Saturday. The testing aims to identify the disease in the community, while allowing important work to safely continue.
“We want to continue to ensure we do what we can to slow the disease spread in our community,” Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier said. “We are pleased to work with the City of Tacoma, the Health Department, and our state and federal partners to make more testing available for our residents.”
Testing is intended for people who have symptoms—fever, cough and shortness of breath—and:
- Work in healthcare.
- Work in public safety jobs like law enforcement, firefighter, EMS or pharmacist.
- Work in critical infrastructure.
- Such as grocery stores, homeless shelters, restaurants, gas stations, child care workers and public utilities.
- Are in a high-risk group.
- Over 60, underlying conditions, pregnant.
“Healthcare workers, first responders and people who provide critical infrastructure are on the frontlines of helping residents in need during this public health emergency,” said Jessica Gehle, incident commander for the Health Department’s COVID-19 response. “It’s vital we prioritize this testing for them to ensure they are able to protect the health of our communities.”
“Our community’s health and safety is our top priority,” Tacoma Mayor Victoria Woodards said. “We are taking every measure possible to support additional testing for our community while ensuring safety for the community and staff. Ensuring that our first responders and those on the frontlines of service delivery to our community have access to COVID-19 testing is paramount to achieving our top priority.”
The Federal Emergency Management Agency provided 8,000 test kits to Washington. A limited number will be available for the five-day event. More options for COVID-19 testing continue to become available.
Learn more at www.tpchd.org/coronavirus.
Where is the testing site?
Tacoma Dome: 2727 East D Street, Tacoma, WA 98421
Sign-in at the South East entrance.
When will you offer testing?
Testing starts Saturday, March 21 and goes through Wednesday, March 25 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Do I need an appointment?
Yes, you must register through an online screening process. If you are eligible for testing, we will give you an ID and appointment for your test. We prioritized this test site for healthcare workers, first responders, workers in critical infrastructures and vulnerable populations. Testing is limited. If you don’t register through the online screening, you may not receive a test.
Do I walk up or stay in my car at the testing site?
The testing site is drive-thru. You will remain in your car for testing procedures.
When and how will I receive results?
The Federal government provided the test kits. The federal government contracts with labs to process results. You can expect results in 4 to 7 days. The federal government will make 3 attempts to contact you with a positive or negative result. You will receive a call from (833) 447-0001 (Caller ID: Results Center). They will contact you using the number you provided during online registration.
To get electronic records, create an account at patient.labcorp.com.
Should I self-quarantine while I wait for my results?If your healthcare provider approves you for testing, you should remain at home and limit contact with other household members while you wait for your test results. Please see instructions online on how to care for yourself and prevent others from getting sick.
Is testing only available for those showing symptoms?Yes, if you qualify for testing based on the survey.
Who can receive these tests?
The following patients with COVID-19 symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath) are eligible for testing:
- Healthcare workers, first responders and critical infrastructure employees (like grocery store, homeless shelter, restaurant, gas stations and public utilities).
- Patients involved in an illness cluster in a facility or institution.
- Patients 60 years of age or older.
- Patients with underlying medical conditions or compromised immune systems.
- Pregnant women.
How many tests will you conduct each day?We will conduct approximately 200 tests each day for those who qualify through the online assessment.
What will happen if I test positive for COVID-19?
If you have a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19, you should care for yourself at home.
You can discontinue home isolation after:
- At least 3 days (72 hours) have passed without a fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and your respiratory symptoms improve (e.g., cough, shortness of breath). AND
- At least 7 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.
Individuals with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 who haven't had any symptoms may discontinue home isolation when at least 7 days have passed since the date of their first positive COVID-19 diagnostic test and have had no subsequent illness.
Will you also test for influenza A, B, and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)?No, the test is only for COVID-19. Your healthcare provider should test for other viruses before recommending a COVID-19 test.
Is there a restroom or porta-potty at the testing site?No, there are no restroom facilities available for individuals receiving tests. The testing site is drive-thru. You will remain in your car for testing procedures.
I came to the testing site with my family/spouse and my results were positive for COVID-19. What should my family/spouse do?
They should monitor their health for fever, cough and shortness of breath during the 14 days after the last day they were in close contact with the sick person with COVID-19. They should avoid public places for 14 days.
Can families of qualified people get tested?
Yes, if they meet the requirements for testing. The priority populations for this event are healthcare, public safety, critical infrastructure and high-risk.
How should I get to the testing site?This is a drive-thru testing site. Plan to stay in your vehicle during testing. If possible, drive yourself to avoid infecting others.
I don’t have internet access. How else can I complete the online questionnaire?
You can complete the survey on a smartphone. Call someone who can walk you through the questions over the phone and submit it for you.
I missed my results call or don’t know if they called me. Will someone else contact me?
You will receive call with your test results from (833) 447-0001 within 4-7 days. The federal government will stop contacting you after they attempt 3 phone calls with no answer from the patient. The federal government can’t leave a voicemail message because the caller can’t verify it’s you.
I want to receive my results electronically. How do I sign-up for that?
All samples went to LabCorp in Phoenix, AZ. For electronic results, create a patient portal account at patient.labcorp.com.
The questionnaire said I’m not eligible for testing. How can I receive testing?
Testing is limited at this time. If you experience COVID-19 symptoms, contact your healthcare provider.
They couldn’t verify my home address during my result call. What should I do?
We’ve heard some participant addresses may be wrong. If your address doesn’t work during verification, try the Tacoma Dome address: 2727 East D St. Tacoma, WA 98421.
What can I expect at the testing site?
The test collection can take 10-20 minutes once you’ve reached the testing station. You will stay in your vehicle and receive a nasal swab.
What if I don't have a car?
This testing site requires a vehicle. Unfortunately, there is no walk-up option.
What if I’m a ride share driver?
Ride share drivers should avoid taking sick people to the testing site.
What should I do while I wait for my test results?
What will you do with the additional tests you received from FEMA?
FEMA gave us approval to distribute the remaining 1,000 tests locally. We have a community-based testing plan in development. We will work with our local partners and leverage health care infrastructure to provide more testing to people who need it. We won’t do another large testing event like did we at the Tacoma Dome. We will share more information as soon as we’ve firmed up our plans for more community-based testing.
Who are critical infrastructure employees? I think I’m critical, but not listed.
Critical infrastructure employees include people who work at grocery stores, homeless shelters, restaurants, gas stations and public utilities. This list is not exhaustive.
Why do you need my government issued ID?
We need to track and follow-up with you if you have a confirmed case. We will use your ID to make sure your results go to the correct person.
Will I receive a letter or email with my test results?
The federal government will only contact you by phone. If you miss their calls or don’t get a call, create an account for electronic records at patient.labcorp.com.