Montgomery County introduces new self-swab testing site for COVID-19

BLUE BELL, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- Montgomery County's new COVID-19 testing site opens Thursday morning in Whitpain Township.

This site, a drive-thru testing location at Montgomery County Community College, is a self-testing site, with each person doing their own nasal swabbing. Tests are by appointment only.

CRITERIA FOR TESTING

Due to the limited number of tests available, tests will be reserved for high-risk individuals meeting one or more of the following five (5) criteria:

  • Persons of any age with symptoms of sudden illness (such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, loss of smell/taste, OR gastrointestinal symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea), with or without fever; OR


  • First responder (law enforcement, fire, EMS, or dispatcher) AND concern for exposure to a patient with suspected COVID-19 OR symptoms of any sudden illness, with or without fever; OR


  • Healthcare worker providing direct patient care AND concern for exposure to a patient with suspected COVID-19 OR symptoms of any sudden illness, with or without fever; OR


  • Anyone with known or suspected direct contact to someone with COVID-19; OR


  • Anyone who has been recommended by their doctor to get tested
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Individuals qualifying under requirements for first responder or healthcare worker status may be asked to provide proper identification.

Individuals not meeting one of the above criteria or who lack this necessary documentation will be denied access to testing.

APPONTMENTS FOR TESTING

The site will remain open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday, as testing supplies allow.

Registration for each day's appointments will open at 8 a.m. each morning and will remain open until all available spots are filled. Individuals can register online at www.montcopa.org/COVID-19.

Registration is also available over the phone (610) 631-3000 for those without access to the internet or email.

After all time slots are filled for each day, anyone attempting to register will be provided with the option to join the waitlist, which will be active for that day only. Individuals on the waitlist will be contacted if any spots become available. Anyone who has registered and finds that they cannot make their appointment should call (610) 631-3000 as soon as possible to ensure that their time slot is made available to someone on the waitlist.

Individuals arriving for testing should enter the campus via the entrance on the 300 block of Dekalb Pike (US 202), Blue Bell, PA 19422. Only enclosed passenger vehicles and small vans and trucks will be permitted to enter the queue. Large commercial vehicles and motorcycles are prohibited, as are pedestrians.

SELF-TESTING PROCEDURE

This site will provide self-swab COVID-19 testing, by appointment only.

A person picks up the test kit from a table, swabs each nostril, putting the swab into a tube and back on the table. The sample then goes off to the lab in a secure bag.

With no direct contact between site workers and potential patients, it cuts the risk of transmission and saves on protective gear.



Montgomery County officials are grateful to Whitpain Township, the Montgomery County Community College, and the Pennsylvania National Guard, as well as other state and federal partners, for their assistance in this coordinated effort to mitigate this public health emergency.

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