CORONAVIRUS

Coronavirus mobile testing site to open in Cedar Rapids on May 11

A public health worker walks to retrieve supplies from his car while working at a coronavirus testing site at the Toledo
A public health worker walks to retrieve supplies from his car while working at a coronavirus testing site at the Toledo Juvenile Home in Toledo on Wednesday, April 22, 2020. The Iowa Department of Public Health, the Iowa Department of Human Services and the Iowa National Guard opened a temporary testing site to test long-term care facility staff in Tama County. They anticipated testing over 350 individuals. (Andy Abeyta/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — The first site for drive-through coronavirus testing will open for two weeks in mid-May at Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids, city officials announced Tuesday.

Test Iowa, a new initiative, will have a soft opening May 11 and 12, and then be fully operational.

Those who will be tested must take a health assessment and qualify for the testing.

“We all know testing is a critical element in moving forward in a positive way,” Cedar Rapids City Manager Jeff Pomeranz said Tuesday during a City Council meeting.

Linn County Emergency Management determined the Kirkwood’s driver training site, 101 50th Ave. SW, would be the best testing site in Linn County.

The state will conduct all testing — a sinus swab that takes about a minute. The Iowa Department of Transportation will handle traffic flow, the Iowa National Guard will handle logistics and setup and local law enforcement officers will provide security, Pomeranz said.

Linn County Public Health will do contact tracing for anyone who tests positive.

An online health assessment can be completed at testiowa.com. The assessment asks about health, symptoms and where people work, and provides instructions for how to get tested if you qualify. Qualifications to get tested include the presence of symptoms, interaction with someone who has tested positive or visits to places where the virus is more widespread.

Those who qualify will receive a time slot to get tested and be directed to a drive-through testing location.

Comments: (319) 368-8664; grace.king@thegazette.com

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Our most important Coronavirus coverage is free to the public.

If you believe local news is essential, especially during this crisis, please donate. Your contribution will support news resources to cover the impact of the pandemic on our local communities.

All donations are tax-deductible.