October 23, 2020
As COVID-19 (the illness caused by coronavirus) activity in our local area has increased, so has the necessity for COVID testing. HNJH is constantly evaluating the situation and we are increasing our testing capacity to meet that need to the best of our ability.
Some of you have noticed that the testing tent on the hospital grounds has recently been taken down. We are replacing it with a larger and sturdier structure in order to continue to meet the community’s need for testing as winter weather arrives. This construction is not interrupting our ability to do COVID testing. We are still able to test anyone who needs a COVID test. If you think you may be a candidate for COVID testing, please call our Coronavirus hotline at 293.9288 for directions on how to get this done.
Our ability to give test results on the day of testing changes day by day, but is currently very limited. Most testing is sent out to regional labs, and the result time varies depending upon many factors. Currently, we are seeing results come back in two to three days, but five to six days is not unusual. It has been very uncommon to see results take longer than seven days. At HNJH we are working hard to be able to provide more same-day results as those tests slowly become more available. “While a positive COVID-19 test result doesn't always lead to a need for treatment, it is an important first step in being able to contain the spread in our community,” explains HNJH Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Michael Beaulieu.
Keep in mind that testing by itself will not stop the spread of the coronavirus. Taking other measures to prevent the spread of the virus remains important. These measures include mask-wearing, social distancing, and frequent hand washing. If you are experiencing symptoms or would like to be tested, call the HNJH Coronavirus Hotline at 293-9288, Monday-Friday from 9AM-3PM, to set up a testing appointment. Individuals with a positive test result will be contacted by the LMAS District Health Department. All other results are followed up by the healthcare provider who ordered the tests.