UPDATE: Church of the Highlands’ Grants Mill Road location to reopen Thursday after reaching capacity for COVID-19 testing today

SkyTracker footage of Church of the Highlands Grants Mill Road testing

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Testing for coronavirus will resume at Church of the Highlands’ Grants Mill Road campus on Thursday after the site reached capacity early on Wendesday.

Assurance Scientific Laboratories quickly ran out of the 500 tests prepared for Wednesday morning, with the site reaching capacity around 8:45. Testing was not scheduled to begin until 9 a.m., but the site was opened early due to a potential traffic delays after hundreds of people showed up before the parking lot was open.

Jennifer Duren with Assurance Scientific Laboratories said workers counted 500 cars and once capacity was met police began turning people away.

Layne Schranz with Church of the Highlands said testing is scheduled to begin again at 9 a.m. on Thursday with the entrance opening at 6:30.

Schranz added that there is not a charge for testing. Your insured will be billed, but if you don’t have insurance testing is free. He also emphasized that if you do not have symptoms or have not come into contact with someone who has tested positive then you will not be tested.

ORIGINAL: The Church of the Highlands is moving COVID-19 testing to the Grants Mill location, which is their largest site.

Organizers had to shut down operations Tuesday at the Grandview location because they reached capacity and there were concerns about traffic congestion on Highway 280.

They tested between 400 and 500 people at the Grandview site Tuesday and are partnering with Christ Health Center and Assurance Scientific Lab to conduct testing.

Day 1 of drive-through testing at Church of the Highlands

Organizers say they will use the numbers from Tuesday testing to determine testing resources and logistics for Wednesday, but believe the new location will allow things to run more smoothly.

People can line up for testing at 6:30 a.m. and testing will start at 9:00 a.m. They are only testing people who have symptoms like cough or fever and have come in direct contact with someone who has had direct contact with someone who is infected.

Once they reach capacity for testing, they will alert people in line about when they can return for testing.

According to the CDC these are the symptoms you need to look for:

Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases.

The following symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure.*

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

Assurance also sent this statement about people who have been tested:

We are aware some patients seen at our Vestavia and Bessemer locations have not received communication via the Spruce application. Every sample that was collected Friday, March 13, 2020, has been tested. We have communicated directly with every patient that tested positive for COVID-19 (Coronavirus) on Friday. If you have not been contacted, your test result was negative for COVID-19 (Coronavirus). Every patient should receive a message even if the result was negative. Please follow the instructions given at your visit and text, “I have not received a message with my test results” to 205-273-9424. All tests from Saturday will be complete by midday Monday. If your test results are positive, you will be contacted directly via phone.

Those with symptoms, or those who have been exposed to others who have tested positive for COVID-19 who think they might have it, can go get tested. Assurance Scientific Labs say they’ve been trying to develop a test since January. The FDA just gave the lab pre-market clearance Wednesday to administer the test. They expect the FDA to fully approve it in 15 days.

They will bill your insurance for the cost of testing. If you don’t have insurance the test will cost you $150.

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