OSAGE, Iowa – A coronavirus testing center starts operating Thursday in Mitchell County.
The center is a partnership of Mitchell County Regional Health Center (MCRHC), Mitchell County Home Health and Public Health (MCPH), and Mitchell County Emergency Management Association. Testing will be by appointment only.
"We are prepared to handle the spread of COVID-19 throughout Mitchell County," says Shelly Russell, CEO of MCRHC. "Our Incident Command Team is tapping into all resources available in our community. The drive-thru testing center helps proactively manage the spread of COVID-19 in our area."
Tests will be done at the Mitchell County Fairgrounds in Osage between 10 am and 2 pm, Monday through Friday. Organizers say test appointments will be accepted until they reach capacity.
“Our top priority is to keep Mitchell County healthy and to prevent the spread of COVID-19,” says Laura Huisman, Administrator of MCPH. "Through supporting one another during this time we will bring the community together," she said.
Organizers emphasize that testing will only be available to those who first call 641-732-6111 for a phone screening. Anyone can call the screening number starting at 8 am Thursday morning. Anyone experiencing symptoms is encouraged to call.
This drive-thru testing site is the first of its kind in Mitchell County.
(A previous version of this story said testing would be free for those over 60. That information was incorrect.)
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