Certain criteria required before entering Big E COVID-19 testing site

Hampden County

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Several local facilities are offering their services to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

Though health care workers and first responders have been working diligently to protect others from the COVID-19 virus, they themselves are some of the individuals most at risk due to high chance of exposure.

In an effort to protect and provide safe and regulated testing for first responders, starting Thursday, The Big E will be a testing site for all public safety and public health workers.

The testing site available here at Gate 1 of the Fairgrounds will be open 7 days a week and for about 8 hours each day. West Springfield Mayor William Reichelt told 22News in order to receive a test, you must show symptoms of COVID-19 and have a referral from your doctor.

The tests will be conducted by members of the Executive of Public Safety and Security and are expected to have results ready within 48 hours of the test.

“If you have symptoms and need the test you want to get it done as soon as possible, have an easy place to go to in and out and have quick results. So, I think this checks all the boxes.”

President of the Massachusetts Police Chiefs Association Jeff Farnsworth said the site will be able to test up to 200 people each day and each test can be made by appointment.

“They will be checked by personnel and never have to get out of their car the entire time,” said Farnsworth. “They’ll drive through, the testing will be done in the building and they can drive on through without having to leave their car.”

As for all other western Massachusetts residents, Keith O’Connor, spokesman for Baystate Medical Center told 22News the hospital will be establishing their own testing sites sometime before the end of the week.

No word exactly where or when these testing sites will be ready.

MAP: The Big E in West Springfield

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