SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Thursday was the last day to get a PCR COVID-19 test at community sites before New Year’s Eve gatherings and public health experts say you definitely should get one.
The Eastfield Mall COVID-19 testing site is closed now for the rest of the year but before New Year’s Eve, they’re seeing crowds so large they’ve had to expand.
“This week has been the busiest week since we opened up in early August of last year but I’m here to say that we are here to test everybody,” said AMR Operations Manager Patrick Leonardo.
Patrick says he never imagined they would be testing this many people but are happy to do it if it’s keeping people safe. The state processed just under 92,000 total tests on Wednesday, with 15,000 positive cases leading to a positive test rate of 13.5 percent.
At the Eastfield Mall they’re now able to do 100 tests every 15 minutes which has lead to a record breaking number of tests they’ve been able to perform since they opened last year.
“Yesterday we ended up going 3,247 which is probably 40 percent more than our largest day ever,” said Leonardo.
Test results from the Eastfield Mall site are coming back in 24 hours for 98 percent of people, so if you got tested Thursday, you should get your test back Friday.
“We want everybody to know to play it safe this new year, keep it to a smaller group, make sure people are masking. There is a lot of the virus out there right now and be safe, and if you need testing, we’re back open on Sunday again,” said Leonardo.
The site even expanded from six lanes to eight in order to service more people. The site reopens on Sunday, you can get a test at the Eastfield Mall’s site on weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and on weekends from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
The positive test rate is currently skyrocketing in Massachusetts this month. It has doubled in the last 10 days and nearly quadrupled since Thanksgiving.