County To Reopen Drive-Thru Coronavirus Test Site At Stadium

D'Ann Lawrence White

This article originally appeared on the Tampa Patch

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, FL — Hillsborough County will reopen the coronavirus drive-through testing site at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa after receiving 1,000 additional testing collection kits from the state.

The date to reopen hasn't been determined because the county is working on obtaining the personal protection equipment required for the medical teams at the site.

Officials anticipate reopening the community testing site as soon as all necessary supplies are in hand.

The testing site is a collaboration among Hillsborough County, the City of Tampa, the Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County and four major medical groups in the region – BayCare, Tampa General Hospital, AdventHealth and HCA Healthcare – West Florida Division.

The county originally opened the drive-through testing site Wednesday but was forced to close it Friday due to an overwhelming demand for tests.

The county had a supply of 900 testing kits and expected to offer drive-through testing four days before running out of kits. But a day after opening the site, the county's call center had received 1,605 calls from residents seeking appointments for coronavirus testing.

All those seeking appointments must be pre-screened by healthcare professionals at the call center.

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In the meantime, those who have coronavirus symptoms (cough, fever, lethargy) should contact their healthcare providers for testing options.

If you are sick and unable to get tested, you should self-quarantine. Stay in a specific "sick room" if possible, and away from other people in your home. Use a separate bathroom if available, and clean high-touch surfaces often.

More tips are available on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Florida Department of Health websites.

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