Local doctors urging residents to get tested for COVID-19 after the holidays

Coronavirus Local Impact

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Local doctors are urging people to get tested for COVID-19 as they return to work after the holidays.

22News spoke with people in Springfield about getting tested for COVID-19, some said they weren’t required to, but they wanted to get tested before heading into the office. Melissa Hickey of Windsor Locks enjoyed celebrating the holidays with family and like many other people, she plans to see family again for New Year’s Eve. Until then, she is working and she said she made sure she got tested for COVID-19.

“We didn’t have to but chose to as a family just to be safe. All of us have really been hunkering down and making sure that we are not with a lot of other people,” Hickey said.

Here in Massachusetts, COVID-19 case totals are hitting an all time record and days after Christmas, doctors at Baystate Health are urging people who are heading into the office to get tested to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the work place.

“If you are going to be working in a setting here, you are working indoors with a lot of people, I think it’s prudent to do that. If you have symptoms, you need to be tested,” said Armando Paez, Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases at Baystate Health.

The CDC recommends that fully vaccinated people test five to seven days after a possible exposure. Non-vaccinated people should test immediately after a possible exposure, then test again five to seven days later.

A reminder if you’re relying on a rapid test, many manufacturers ask you get tested twice within a 24 hour period for the most accurate results. Your best bet is a PCR test, but turnaround times for results could be up to a day or more.

Baystate Health officials are also are urging people to avoid the emergency rooms for a COVID-19 test and instead go to a community site.

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