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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 21, 2020
Media Contact: Bobbi MabbCommunications ManagerTel: (413) 594-1506
CHICOPEE – Friday, December 18, 2020, Mayor John L. Vieau hosted a press conference about the new community COVID-19 mobile testing site that will open at Chicopee Comprehensive High School. The conference was held with minimal attendance to practice safe physical distancing. Video of the conference is available on the City of Chicopee – Mayors Office Facebook page.
On Tuesday, December 22, 2020, the City of Chicopee will begin to offer appointment-free COVID-19 testing to any First Responder, ALL City of Chicopee residents (over the age of 2 years old)21, and City of Chicopee Municipal employees and their families without the need for insurance or the ability to pay. Every test will be administered for free. This new testing site will administer up to 20,000 tests for up to 3 months or till the tests run out.
The following COVID-19 drive-through testing times will be available for any First Responder, ALL City of Chicopee residents, and City of Chicopee Municipal employees and their families (up to 400 per day):
Tuesday, December 22nd | 8 AM - Noon
Wednesday, December 23rd | 8 AM - Noon
Monday, December 28th | 8 AM - Noon
Tuesday, December 29th | 8 AM - Noon
Wednesday, December 30th | 8 AM - Noon
The city is operating this as a drive-through only testing site while the state continues to provide walk-up testing locations at other area locations that can be found at https://www.mass.gov/covid-19-testing. Patients must visit the CCHS site in their vehicles, as testing will be done in their car. No walk-ups will be allowed.
Any First Responder, all City of Chicopee residents, and City of Chicopee Municipal employees and their families can simply visit the new drive-through site at Chicopee Comprehensive High School beginning at 8:00 AM until Noon on any of the above available dates.
Although no appointment is required, you can speed the process by completing the necessary intake form online, print it, and bring it with you (including the required proof of Chicopee residency). The intake form can be found here:
"We needed to offer local testing to many more city residents to better prevent its spread," said Lisa Sanders, Chicopee Health Director. "Testing will also give us a better idea of when we may begin to lessen the current health orders."
Up to 400 patients are expected to be tested daily at the new site and the results will be garnered within 24 hours as these are PCR tests. PCR testing is considered the “gold standard” in SARS-CoV-2 detection. This test detects RNA (or genetic material) that is specific to the virus and can detect the virus within days of infection, even those who have no symptoms. Turnaround time can be in as little as 24 hours. When demand is high, results can take a bit longer.
Symptoms that may warrant a test include cough, shortness of breath, fever, chills, fatigue, muscle ache, sore throat, headache, vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, the recent loss of taste or smell, or confusion, particularly in older adults.
“We will continue to require every one of our residents to follow the CDC social distancing guidelines, to wear a face covering, wash your hands frequently, and stay home if you feel sick,” stated Mayor John L. Vieau. “We are very pleased to be able to offer another way for our city’s residents to help keep each other safe. Have symptoms? Go get tested.”
For more City of Chicopee COVID-19 information and more dates as they become available, visit: https://www.chicopeema.gov/889/COVID-19
HOW CAN I HELP PREVENT THE SPREAD OF COVID-19?
As always, if you are not sure if a COVID-19 test is right for you, please talk with your healthcare provider.