CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Communities across western Massachusetts were offering free COVID-19 testing just before Christmas.
For those looking to get tested to travel before the holiday or spend time with family, there was be testing available in Chicopee and Ludlow Tuesday.
“This current site today will test anywhere between 600 to 800 people that we have pre-registered,” said Patrick Leonardo, AMR Operations Manager for western Massachusetts.
There was a drive-thru testing between 8 a.m. and Noon at Chicopee Comprehensive High School Tuesday and will be held again on Wednesday. The Ludlow testing site was located at 627 Randall Road and was available from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. People looking to get tested there needed to be in line by 3 p.m.
AMR administered the tests in Ludlow and test results are expected to come back before Christmas day.
Lines of cars moved quickly through the drive-thru COVID-19 testing spot in Ludlow at the Hampden county correctional center.
“Doing this today, they can be in line for a very short time and get the results in a day or as I said two days tops,” said Ludlow Town Selectman Derek Devarge.
Coming at a time when Hampden County is facing a rise in cases.
Hampden County Sheriff Nick Cocchi told 22News, “It’s important that we’re identifying individuals that are carrying the virus and making sure we’re quarantining them and isolating them so they don’t spread it to very compromised individuals”
For the Chicopee site, testing is limited to Chicopee residents and city employees plus all western Massachusetts first responders and Hampden County Sherriff Department employees. Testing will also be available after Christmas for December 28, 29, and 30 from 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.
No registration is required but is encouraged and residents must provide proof of residency.
About 400 residents are expected to be tested a day and test results are expected within 24 hours.
Leonardo says if you do receive a negative test, that doesn’t mean you should toss out social distancing this Christmas, “A negative test still means wear a mask, wash your hands frequently, still stay six feet apart but at least have that extra security knowing you did test negative.”