CHARLOTTE, N.C. — North Carolina and Mecklenburg County health officials had been adamant about not gathering in groups or traveling for the Thanksgiving holiday. However, they agreed that if you're going to travel, it's important to get a coronavirus test before meeting with others.
With Thanksgiving now behind us, many people who may have traveled are considering getting tested now that they've returned home.
To see if there's a community testing event near you, visit the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services' website.
To find a testing site in South Carolina, visit the South Carolina Department of Health and Environment Control website.
Officials opened two brand new testing sites last Monday to help keep up with the demand of those needing testing. Mecklenburg County also has a COVID-19 testing site tracking tool.
A drive-thru testing site is now set up at Bojangles Coliseum. The site on East Independence Boulevard is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
The line of cars at the site was long and people began lining up 45 minutes before testing began last week. Officials told WCNC Charlotte even if a person is in line at 5 p.m., it does not guarantee they will be able to get tested. Officials will eventually institute a cutoff time at the location.
Due to the long lines at Bojangles Coliseum, health officials decided to add another testing site to deal with demand Monday. The SE Health Department at 249 Billingsley Road offered no-cost tests from 1 to 5 p.m. Monday.
Health officials originally planned to open the testing site at Bojangles Coliseum on Friday, but a problem with the necessary supplies for the site forced officials to move the opening to Monday.
Additional testing sites include:
- NW Clinic (extended hours ahead of the holiday): 2845 Beatties Ford Road. Open 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
- Target University City (testing event): 8120 University City Boulevard. Friday, Nov. 20 through Sunday, Nov. 22 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Urgent Care Facilities (hours and locations vary)
- Primary Care Offices
- CVS/Walgreens locations (hours and locations vary)
Health officials say with demand for testing increasing, the turnaround for results is increasing as well. Patients should expect a two to three-day turnaround time.
Charlotte-area college campuses will be offering exit testing to students and staff leaving for the Thanksgiving holiday. Those campuses include UNCC, Johnson & Wales, and Davidson College.
According to Mecklenburg County health officials, COVID-19 testing is recommended for anyone who:
- Has symptoms of COVID-19
- Had close contact with someone who has COVID-19
- Is higher risk due to age, health conditions, or employment
- Recently attended any gathering
- Is planning to travel, especially based on destination
- Plan to be in close contact with individuals who are considered high-risk