COVID-19 testing scheduled
The Western Tidewater Health District will be holding free COVID-19 testing in Smithfield, Franklin and Suffolk in August.
The testing began Aug. 7 at Sentara BelleHarbour in North Suffolk. Eight additional testing events will take place over the course of the month. All of them are free, and anyone can be tested, whether or not they have symptoms.
Dr. Todd Wagner, director of the Western Tidewater Health District, made the announcement at the Aug. 5 Suffolk City Council meeting.
Those who want to be tested need to bring with them photo identification.
The health department said people would receive results within three to four business days after being tested, and that it would call anyone who receives a positive result.
The testing comes as the seven-day positivity rate for COVID-19 through Aug. 3 — the most recent reporting date — has spiked to 13.8% in the district, which includes Suffolk, Franklin, Southampton County and Isle of Wight County. Among localities in South Hampton Roads, the seven-day positivity rate has been trending down all but the Western Tidewater Health District. Portsmouth’s 7-day positivity rate is 14.9%, followed by the Western Tidewater Health District, Chesapeake (12.6%), Norfolk (10.6%) and Virginia Beach (8.6%).
The statewide positivity rate is 7.2%. Western Tidewater’s seven-day positivity rate is the highest of all districts in the state except two — Portsmouth and West Piedmont, which includes the city of Martinsville as well as the counties of Franklin, Henry and Patrick.
Upcoming COVID-19 testing
Aug. 10 — Main Street Baptist Church, 517 Main St., Smithfield, 9 to 11 a.m. and 1 to 3 p.m.
Aug. 14 — Sentara Obici Hospital, 2800 Godwin Blvd., Suffolk, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Aug. 15 — Sentara Obici Hospital, 2800 Godwin Blvd., 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Aug. 17 — Paul D. Camp Community College, 100 N. College Drive, Franklin, 9 to 11 a.m. and 1 to 3 p.m.
Aug. 21 — Sentara BelleHarbour, 3920A Bridge Road, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Aug. 22 — Sentara BelleHarbour, 3920A Bridge Road, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Aug. 24 — Main Street Baptist Church, 517 Main St., Smithfield, 9 to 11 a.m. and 1 to 3 p.m.
Aug. 28 — Sentara Obici Hospital, 2800 Godwin Blvd., Suffolk, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.