COVID-19 testing site in Cleveland open through Friday

Ann Kebodeaux stops by the COVID-19 testing site on Tuesday to ask a few questions of the staff of Emergency Hospital Systems, which has two hospitals in Cleveland - Texas Emergency Hospital and Cleveland Emergency Hospital. She graciously agreed to let Bluebonnet News take her photo as she made her inquiries.

There is still time to be tested for COVID-19 at the mobile testing site set up at The Sanctuary in Cleveland by Emergency Hospital Systems. The testing site will be open through Friday. The daily hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Emergency Hospital Systems Chief Operating Officer Patti Foster says the mobile lab will be extended if the demand warrants it.

As of noon Tuesday, 16 people had been tested but many more were on the schedule for testing through Friday.

Representatives of the City of Cleveland – Councilwoman Marilyn Clay and Economic Development Director Robert Reynolds – brought lunch to the staff of Emergency Hospital Systems on Tuesday at the COVID-19 testing site set up at The Sanctuary. Left to right are Clay, Chief Operating Officer Patti Foster and CCOO Michael Adkins with Emergency Hospital Systems, and Reynolds.

“We are taking care of as many people as we can,” said Foster.

If you don’t have an appointment, don’t worry. Because the test is quick – less than five minutes to fill out paperwork and be tested – and turnout is light, hospital staff are able to squeeze in people without appointments.

The test is covered by most insurance or people can pay the $150 fee themselves. Foster says the hospital is not profiting from the mobile testing center.

“We are not making any money off of this. We are just covering our costs,” she said. “One of the things we’ve heard is, ‘What if I don’t have insurance or $150 for the test?’ What we are telling people is if they present with these problems, such as cough, fever or respiratory problems – go to the ER. We will help you there. We have indigent papers that we can fill out for you to cover the cost. If you present yourself at the ER, we are going to take care of you.”

Foster said that residents should not be overly alarmed to see an increase in the number of cases in Liberty County as this is the result of increased testing.

“We are going to find more positives and more negatives, too, as more people are tested. Everyone should just do what the Centers for Disease Control recommends, such as washing their hands and wearing protective clothing,” she said. “If you are sick and have a fever, stay home until you are well. If your fever elevates and you start feeling worse, go to an ER.”

The Sanctuary is located at 100 E. Hanson St., Cleveland. To register online for testing, go to https://www.emergencyhospitals.care/covid_testing_houston/

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