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Drive-thru testing for coronavirus coming to Corpus Christi

Officials said the drive-thru testing could begin as soon as Thursday.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The City-County Public Health District stressed Monday that there are still no confirmed cases of the COVID-19 coronavirus in the Coastal Bend, but in order to stay ahead of the virus they will begin drive-thru testing this week.

Officials said the drive-thru testing could begin as soon as Thursday.

The testing will take place in the parking lot of the old Christus Spohn Memorial Hospital.

On Saturday people in Hazmat suits were seen near the hospital, which is located at 2606 Hospital Boulevard near Morgan and 19th. They were conducting a run-through of the testing.

Here's how it will work:

People who have symptoms of COVID-19 are asked to follow a two-step process.

First, call the Public Health District at 361-826-7200. An assessment will be conducted to determine if they meet the Center's for Disease Control criteria for testing.

Second, schedule an appointment at the drive-thru screening center where the test will be conducted.

Each person will receive two swabs, one for the nose and another for the throat. Those are then frozen and shipped to a CDC lab, the State Health Department or a commercial lab for testing.

It takes three or four days for the tests to process and the results will be sent to your doctor.

Keep in mind, doctors do not have the test kits -- a lab does -- and it's not a blood test. You cannot be tested at a government or commercial lab. They just process the swabs that are collected.

Also, the results are not instant like the test for the flu. Each sample can take hours to process.

Again, if you believe you have symptoms of the COVID-19 coronavirus, you are told to first call the Public Health District at 361-826-7200.

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