Expanded COVID-19 testing conducted in Astumbo

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With a lot at stake including the possible lifting of current restrictions depending on the results, the Department of Public Health and Social Services conducted its expanded COVID-19 testing in Astumbo, Dededo yesterday.

The drive-through/walk-in testing started at 9 a.m. and lasted up to 12 noon.

Government of Guam and private sector nurses took samples from 52 people; 10 were walk-ins and 42 went through the drive-through line. None have tested positive so far.

The Guam Public Health Laboratory processed the samples through a laboratory process called polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to detect traces of the virus that causes COVID-19.

Testing was limited but is free and open to residents of Sagan Linhanyan and Lower Astumbo who meet the following criteria:

*Individuals with COVID-19 symptoms

*Multi-generational families in a household (parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, adult children, their children) with COVID-19 symptoms

DPHSS nurses and public health officials canvassed the areas on Thursday and Friday to pre-screen residents and issue passes.

Residents who met the criteria for the pilot test were issued individual passes to enter the drive-through or walk-in line for Saturday’s testing.

Residents who showed up and do not have a pass, but exhibit COVID-19 symptoms or those who are asymptomatic, were given an information leaflet and had their information collected by public health nurses.

They will be contacted by DPHSS at a later time.

DPHSS stressed that this is just a pilot program and it intents to provide the service to more people in the future.

Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero had stated that if the results of the expanded testing turn out well, she may gradually start the phased reopening of the island and lift the restrictions currently in place.

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