Well being Division Ramps up COVID Testing | Coronavirus Information
As COVID infection numbers continue to rise in Moore County, the local health department will offer testing every weekday beginning Monday, January 24.
Tests are available Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Department of Health, 705 N. Pinehurst Ave., in Carthage. Opening hours on Friday are from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m
The tests take place in the department’s parking lot and are drive-through only. The tests are available to the general public without an appointment, without expense and without a doctor’s referral.
FirstHealth of the Carolinas closed its COVID-19 drive-through testing site in Pinehurst Thursday as rain impacted operations and FirstHealth drive-up COVID testing was relocated to FirstHealth convenience care sites in the Sandhills.
“We have tested thousands of people over the past two weeks and our staff at Pinehurst have been working long hours – often in very cold temperatures – to meet the increased demand for COVID-19 testing,” said Dr. Dan Barnes, president of FirstHealth Medical Group, said.
“We will shift those resources to convenience care clinics to continue offering COVID-19 testing seven days a week.”
FirstHealth Convenience Care will offer drive-up COVID-19 testing for people who have symptoms of COVID-19. Patients must register and check in with their car at Convenience Care upon arrival.
“Due to our limited test supplies and the extension of the turnaround time for results by up to four days, we are unable to test for travel or retest for return to school or work,” Barnes said. “Our resources are focused on patients who have symptoms of COVID-19 and need to be tested.”
Barnes added that those looking for COVID testing should not visit FirstHealth’s emergency rooms.
Each home is also now eligible to order four free at-home COVID-19 tests. You can order these at www.covidtests.gov. The tests will be delivered directly to your home within 1-2 weeks.
The surge in testing comes as the Omicron strain of coronavirus pushes infection numbers to record levels. More than a quarter of the people in FirstHealth of the Carolinas hospitals are believed to be COVID-19 positive.
On Wednesday, the health department reported more than 400 new infections every day. The county has averaged more than 335 new infections per day for the past week and is expected to surpass the 20,000 mark on Thursday for cases since the pandemic began two years ago. That’s 20 percent of the county’s population.
About 54 percent of the county’s population is vaccinated, but “breakthrough” cases of infection have been reported. Vaccinated individuals who contract the omicron variant of the virus report milder symptoms than those who remain unvaccinated.