VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) - A free drive-thru COVID-19 testing site is set to open to the public Tuesday in Vancouver.
The site will include both drive-thru and walk-up testing, and will be available at no cost, regardless of income level, health insurance coverage or immigration status.
Testing at the site is recommended for people ages 4 and older who are experiencing symptoms or who have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.
The testing site in the Tower Mall parking lot, 5403 E. Mill Plain Blvd., will be open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.
People are encouraged to pre-register for testing and times at ClarkcountyCOVIDTesting.org. On-site registration will also be available.
The testing process takes 20 to 40 minutes. The process involves an oral saliva PCR test, which requires coughing deeply three to five times and swabbing the inside of the mouth for 20 seconds.
Results are then expected within three days.
Tests are administered under the observation of a trained staff member.
The testing site is expected to operate for several months. At full operation, the site has the capacity to test 1,000 to 1,500 people per day.
Face coverings are required for everyone, including those using the drive-thru testing option. Staff working at the testing site will wear appropriate personal protective equipment and follow physical distancing requirements. Those using the drive-thru service will remain in their vehicles. The walk-up area will have signs to ensure physical distancing.
The city of Vancouver will maintain day-to-day management and operation of the site. Clark County Public Health is overseeing training on proper test administration and providing all necessary health and safety protocols. CRESA is supplying face coverings and other personal protective equipment. Site and staffing costs are primarily covered by the Washington State Department of Health. Curative is the lab conducting the testing.