The City of Houston is opening a COVID-19 testing site in Northwest Houston.
Mayor Sylvester Turner said Tuesday that Houston ISD’s Delmar Stadium, 2020 Mangum Rd., will be used as a testing site starting Wednesday. It will be the city’s second free, drive-through testing site along with Butler Stadium in Southwest Houston, where testing has been conducted since March 20 to identify cases of the upper-respiratory disease caused by the new strain of coronavirus.
FEMA is sponsoring a total of four free testing sites in the region, two apiece operated by the city and Harris County. Each site has the capacity to administer 250 tests per day.
“We will be doubling our capacity in the city of Houston,” Turner said. “We are hoping to increase the number of people who can be tested at these sites.”
Turner said the testing sites are open to anyone who is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, which include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Dr. David Persse with the Houston Health Department has said that people who are not symptomatic could get false negative results.
Those who wish to be tested at the city’s sites must first be screened by calling the Houston Health Department’s COVID-19 call center at 832-393-4220 between 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday through Friday or between 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Patients may also be screened by visiting houstonemergency.org/covid19.
Harris County has two free testing sites. To be screened, visit ReadyHarris.org or call 832-927-7575.
For both the city and county’s testing sites, those who meet testing criteria during the screening process will be given instructions about how to proceed.
United Memorial Medical Center at 510 W. Tidwell Rd., is operating another free, drive-through testing site that operates from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday through Friday. Pre-screening is not required for that site.
As of Tuesday, the city had reported 377 COVID-19 cases among residents and four deaths. Harris County had reported an additional 303 cases and two deaths, as well as 61 people who have recovered.
Turner said Tuesday that 38 city employees, including 12 police officers and eight firefighters, had tested positive.
Turner and Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo said their testing sites will continue to operate as long as they continue to receive the necessary supplies, including personal protective equipment (PPE), from the federal government.
“We are limited by the PPEs,” Turner said. “In order to do the testing, we have to protect the healthcare workers and people on the front lines. We can’t just say we’re going to do testing if we don’t have the equipment. But we do know we need robust testing. That will help us to stay on top of (the local outbreak).”