By Drew Hansen – Assistant Managing Editor, Washington Business Journal
Mar 18, 2020, 8:42am EDT
Updated Mar 18, 2020, 8:51am EDT
Virginia Hospital Center is teaming with Arlington County to launch a drive-thru testing site for the coronavirus.
Virginia Hospital Center in Arlington announced late Tuesday it is partnering with several county agencies to open a temporary, appointment-only drive-thru COVID-19 sample collection site at 1429 N. Quincy St. near Virginia Square.
Samples will be collected from only Arlington residents, county and school system employees and patients of VHC medical staff. The facility opens at 9 a.m. Wednesday and will be open between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. on weekdays.
The site is only for patients exhibiting coronavirus symptoms, including fevers, chills, cough or shortness of breath, that have received a written order for testing from a licensed health care provider. VHC said the testing site is not meant for asymptomatic patients, including those that have been in close contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19.
Patients who have received a physician’s order should call VHC’s COVID-19 scheduling line at 703-558-5766 between 8:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. to make an appointment before arriving.
Arrivals at the site will be asked to remain in their cars. Test results will be available with five to seven days after collection.
“The opening of this temporary facility allows us to meet the urgent needs of our community while our Emergency Department continues to serve those who require immediate medical attention,” VHC President and CEO James Cole said in a statement. “We are grateful to our staff as well as our colleagues at public health, police and fire for their exhaustive efforts to make this sample collection site possible.”
Here’s a look at what other hospitals and clinics in the region are doing to prepare for an influx of patients.