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Health experts said long testing times at Liberty High testing site shows need for more testing

Published: Jan. 13, 2022 at 10:20 PM CST
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NORTH LIBERTY, Iowa (KCRG) - The Liberty High parking lot was a scene Thursday that we haven’t seen since the early days of the pandemic; people lined up in their cars to get COVID-19 tests.

NOMI Health opened its testing site this week, where it offers rapids testing and PCR testing to the public for free, but people had to wait in line.

“I have been here 2 hours,” said Deb Schoelerman of Iowa City.

That long wait did force her to miss an appointment but said this long wait shows there’s a need for more testing.

“We tried to get tests from Walgreens and CVS, and nobody has any right now,” she said. “Everyone has sold out.”

Others, like Amy Bayon of Iowa City, have noticed a similar story.

“My daughter tested positive this morning, and we waited an hour,” said Bayon. “We tried to get some rapids tests from various local stores, but I wasn’t able to complete my online order.”

“Throughout the past couple of weeks, we’ve noticeably seen the demand for testing,” Johnson County Community Health Manager Sam Jarvis.

Jarvis said NOMI has agreements with the Iowa City and Des Moines School Districts for testing. He wasn’t sure who should be organizing more testing sites like this, but there was a need.

“I think seeing the demand now was knowing that testing capacity at various times has been limited,” said Jarvis. “Having more testing was always a good thing.”

More testing brings more awareness so those who are positive can prevent infecting others.

“I want to know if I have COVID-19 because I’m in a situation where I don’t want to expose anyone else,” said Schoelerman. “I’m here to get a test to protect others.”

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