WEST MIAMI-DADE, FLA. (WSVN) - Miami-Dade County is stepping up coronavirus testing availability as cases continue to rise.
County leaders have now expanded hours and added more sites to meet the surge and demands for testing.
Two new COVID-19 testing sites have opened in Miami-Dade County:
- Youth Fairgrounds at Tamiami Park, 10901 SW 24th St., from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
- Dolphin Station Park & Ride, 11897 NW 12 St., from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The testing site at Zoo Miami, 12400 SW 152 St., is now open seven days a week, 24 hours a day.
7News cameras captured a long line at the Youth Fairgrounds testing site.
“It’s going pretty fast,” said Stephanie Sobalvarro while waiting in line. “I’ve been here like maybe 30 minutes?”
“It’s pretty long, but it’s not as bad as yesterday,” said Vince Delgado while waiting for a COVID-19 test. “I tried going to the zoo, and that was a lot worse. I ended up just waking up early and trying to get to this one. I had an appointment at the other one, it apparently was going to be like a five-hour wait.”
One man spoke to 7News saying he took a test on Tuesday, but it came back as “rejected,” so he was back in line again on Wednesday morning.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky spoke about the reliability of rapid tests.
“We actually don’t know how our rapid tests perform and how well they predict whether you’re transmissible during the end of disease,” she said. “The FDA has not authorized them for that use. We don’t know how they perform.”
In Miami-Dade County, the seven-day positivity average is high at 25%.
Officials in Broward County are also seeing more people visiting their testing sites, and they two have added two more testing sites.
Marcum Park will open on Thursday, and will open a second site on Monday at Mullins Park in Coral Springs.
Some folks waited in line to get tested after spending the holidays with loved ones.
“I was able to spend it with family, but the COVID just surprised us out of nowhere,” said Daniel Hernandez while waiting for a COVID-19 test. “I just want to be safe, and I want to make sure everybody around me is safe.
Others need a negative test to return to work.
“I’m doing it because I have to go back to work, and we have to be responsible,” said a woman waiting in line.
No matter which site South Floridians visit, they should come prepared for long wait times.
“Make sure you eat something before and make sure you use the bathroom before,” said Delgado.
“I feel like this is becoming a regular thing. We just need to protect ourselves and stay healthy,” said Sobalvarro.
Health experts point to vaccinations and boosters as the key to making a difference.
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