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Clark County’s COVID-19 testing ‘blitz’ gets off to a solid start

Clark County launched its most ambitious COVID-19 testing effort on Monday, a 14-day “blitz” aimed at administering 60,000 tests.

Hundreds of people provided samples at Sam Boyd Stadium to determine whether they are infected with the disease caused by the new coronavirus on the first day of the “Stop, Swab and Go” effort, which will continue until Sept. 18 at the stadium and three other locations: Fiesta Henderson, Texas Station and the city of Mesquite. The free tests are self-performed nasal swab testing in a drive-thru. No proof of health insurance is required.

Clark County and health officials obtained additional supplies as part of a federal program offering surge testing in coronavirus hot spots across the nation, according to a Clark County news release.

“This is so critical right now because we’re at the stage where if we test right we’ll be able to further open up. If we don’t, then we’ll know how we’ll have to clamp down,” said Clark County Commissioner Tick Segerblom at a news conference on Monday. “It’s really critical that everybody, if they can, show up at one of these places in the next two weeks.”

Clark County has made a big effort to reach out to the east Las Vegas Hispanic community, which has been especially hard-hit by the virus, according to Segerblom.

“That’s where we found a large concentration of positives, so this is part of that whole process right now,” he said. “It’s been very successful, and we’re getting on top of it.”

All test results will be reported to the Southern Nevada Health District.

“Anyone notified of a positive test result is encouraged to stay home and self-isolate to limit the spread of the virus,” according to a release. “The health district will follow up only with people who test positive for the virus as part of its local contact tracing and disease investigation efforts.”

Appointments, while not necessary, are strongly encouraged. People can sign up at DoINeedACOVID19Test.com.

The added test locations will be open 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday except for Labor Day, adding to existing sites at UNLV and Cashman Center. Testing is available for anyone, symptomatic or not.

Results can be expected in three to five days, according to Billy Samuels, deputy fire chief at Clark County Fire Department.

Call the health district between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. with general questions about COVID-19 at 702-759-4636. For resources available in Spanish, visit EstaEnTusManosNevada.com.

The district also has a calendar of all testing sites in Clark County available at southernnevadahealthdistrict.org/covid-19-testing-sites.

Contact Alex Chhith at achhith@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0290. Follow @alexchhith on Twitter.

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