Monroe County conducts free community COVID-19 testing for first time

LINDSIDE, WV (WOAY) – Free community testing for COVID-19 was offered in Monroe County for the first time. 

According to the Monroe County Health Department Administrator Julie Mundell, testing has always been available in the county, but this marks the first time that the county has deliberately focused on more rural and vulnerable populations.  

“Now this is the first community event that we’ve done. Now, we do testing everyday. We work with Monroe Health Center which is located in Peterstown, and we have sites in Forest Hill and also in Virginia and we do testing everyday there,” Mundell said. 

The goal of the free rapid testing is to encourage more people to get tested. And according to Theresa White with the West Virginia Division of Homeland Security, the entire country is seeing more cases everyday, so it’s important now more than ever to get tested if you haven’t yet, even if you don’t think you’re sick. 

“I think it’s extremely important that everybody be tested because of the asymptomatic factor that’s in there. You could be going around and, unbeknownst to you, spreading the virus and not even realize that you have it,” White said. 

This testing was free for everyone, including people without health insurance or those that don’t even live in Monroe County. The next county to have free community testing provided by the state and local government will be Lincoln County on June 29.

The community testing was part of the ongoing effort by the state to provide more testing opportunities for minority and vulnerable populations.