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Free COVID-19 testing in Abbotsford

Marathon County Health Department, Clark County Health Department and Family Health La Clinica will provide COVID-19 testing on Thursday, July 9 from noon to 8 p.m. and Friday, July 10 from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. The event will provide drive-through and walk-up style COVID-19 nasal swab testing at 1011 E. Spruce St. (parking lot of the Dollar General store). Spanish language support will be available.

Community members do not need to be experiencing symptoms to be tested. However, it is strongly encouraged that anyone who is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 seek testing at this time. Symptoms included fever, cough, congestion, loss of taste/smell, shortness of breath, sore throat, fatigue, body aches, diarrhea, vomiting or nausea, chills, and/or muscle aches. Participants must be age 5 years or older.

If someone has been identified as being a “close contact” with a positive case, they may be asked to participate at the request of their public health department. Public health staff investigates each positive case to determine who they may have exposed during their infectious period. If you have a known exposure or are considered a “close contact,” a public health staff member will call you to guide you through quarantine and COVID-testing options.

Family Health La Clinica, a Wisconsin Community Health Center will have bilingual Spanish/English health education staff on-site to provide information on preventing the spread of COVID, what to expect if you are diagnosed with COVID-19 and answer any questions. Family Health La Clinica’s family physician Cheston Price believes the event can promote “education as a primary weapon in the fight against the spread of COVID-19.”

“Identifying positive cases is a key aspect of our strategy to mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” said Marathon County health officer Joan Theurer. “Our goal is to reach out to the Abbotsford community, which has been experiencing outbreaks at this time, and work to assist those businesses and individuals who have positive tests.”

Patients will be made aware at the event that, if they receive a positive test result, a public health nurse would call them and walk them through the next steps. Until the result is delivered, the health departments asked that all symptomatic individuals stay home and refrain from attending, work, school, church or any other public event and to self-quarantine. Those tested that are not experiencing symptoms can return to all activities, but are encouraged to use appropriate social distancing to reduce their risk. Individuals will be contacted with results within three to seven days and participants are strongly encouraged to pick up the phone for unknown numbers during that time, as it may be their COVID-test results.

The two main goals for this event are to provide vulnerable communities with mass testing and to give public health better insight into how widespread COVID-19 is in area communities. The Wisconsin Institute for Public Policy and Service is supporting this effort with Spanish-speaking liaisons to make this service more accessible to Spanish-speaking persons.

If you have questions or immediate needs related to COVID-19, call 2-1-1 or text COVID-19 to 211211. For upto- date information, visit the Marathon County Health Department website and Facebook page.