COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – A centralized COVID-19 testing site is moving to the Ohio State Fairgrounds.
Beginning Monday, October 19th, drive-thru testing will begin by appointment near the Celeste Building. Multiple hospital systems will use the space to conduct tests. They’ll also offer free flu vaccines starting Monday, October 26th with no appointment necessary.
“It’s important for them to be together and be in one location and it’s easier for our residents to be able to come there,” said Columbus City Councilmember Priscilla Tyson.
Tyson, chair of the Health and Human Services Committee, sponsored and introduced the measure at a recent City Council meeting. Council approved the emergency ordinance allocating $267,750 of CARES Act funding for a contract with the Ohio Expositions Commission for the space.
“The weather will soon change, and we just want to make sure everyone knows this is the location for either of those services,” Tyson said.
Columbus Public Health Commissioner Dr. Mysheika Roberts says her staff and many of the hospital systems were looking for a more permanent location with warmer shelter for workers administering tests. Many are currently operating drive-thru events under tents in parking lots.
Another concern for health professionals as the weather gets colder is the possibility of rising in COVID-19 cases during what’s typically a busy flu season.
“We’re really concerned about the double-whammy where we could see a surge in flu cases and COVID-19. And we’re worried about what that could do to our health care systems,” Dr. Roberts explained.
She echoed a similar warning to one Governor Mike DeWine issued Tuesday about rising COVID-19 cases expected to get worse before they improve.
“I am concerned as the temperature continues to drop, as we bring more activities inside, as we start gathering for Buckeye games, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas – what that could mean for the spread of COVID-19 in our communities,” she said.
Dr. Roberts explained testing for the virus is important to containing it.
“COVID-19 testing is important to get us through this pandemic. We’ve got to test first to be able to identify a case, to be able to isolate an individual so they no longer spread it to others,” she said.
The following includes a list of COVID-19 testing sites in the city of Columbus. Many require patients to call ahead and schedule an appointment.
Celeste Center at Ohio State Fairgrounds:
717 E 17th Ave, Columbus, OH 43211
*starting Mon., Oct. 19
Mon.-Fri. 9 a.m.- 4 p.m.
Capital Park Family Health Center:
2365 Innis Rd., Columbus
Mon., Tue., Wed., Fri. – 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Thu., – 8 a.m.-7:30 p.m.
Whitehall Family Health Center:
882 S. Hamilton Rd., Whitehall
Mon., Wed., Thu., Fri. – 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Tue. – 8 a.m.-7:30 p.m.
PrimaryOne Health at the Health and Wellness Center:
1905 Parsons Ave., Columbus
Mon., Wed., Fri. – 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
3433 Agler Rd., Columbus Mon.,
Wed., Fri. – 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
PrimaryOne Health at St. Stephens Community House:
1500 E. 17th Ave., Columbus
Mon., Wed., Fri. – 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
Equitas Health King-Lincoln Medical Center:
750 E. Long St., Columbus
Telehealth Screening: Mon.-Fri. – 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
Testing: Mon.-Fri. – 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
86 N. Front St., Columbus
Mon., Wed., Fri. – 1-4 p.m