PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — Dozens of Pinellas County School teachers, parents and staff waited hours to receive their COVID tests Wednesday after the school district announced the site a day earlier. Cars were seen lining the street an hour before the testing site opened.
Evara Health is administering the tests from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at its facility at 14100 58th Street North in Clearwater.
Kalie Chapman spent roughly two hours in line.
“I’m a teacher and I just want to be cautious and safe,” Chapman said. “And not be spreading COVID.”
8 On Your Side caught up with parent Kevin Wells while he waited for his test results.
“I’m here, just like everybody else, just to get tested and know what my status is right now,” Wells said. “I don’t have any symptoms, but I felt it would be the responsible thing to do. Got here about 8:15, so it’s been about two hours.”
Dr. Nichelle Threadgill, Evara Health’s chief medical officer, is urging people to be patient.
“I think everyone understands that the demand has increased significantly,” Dr. Threadgill said. “There are fewer testing centers than there were in the beginning of 2020 when we were in the heart of the pandemic, so we encourage everyone to be patient.”
Dr. Threadgill added not everyone needs to get tested. “If you’re asymptomatic, really the recommendation is monitor for symptoms,” Dr. Threadgill said. “If you are symptomatic, then that would be a prompt to test.”
The site is not open for the general public, only school district employees, students and their families are eligible for testing.