NewsCovering Kern County


Federally-funded surge testing site capable of conducting 60,000 COVID-19 tests over two weeks

COVID-19 Testing Site Sign
Posted at 8:32 AM, Jul 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-29 11:32:13-04

As Kern County deals with a spike in COVID-19 cases, the federal government has gotten involved to increase the number of tests with the hopes of curbing the coronavirus locally.

On Wednesday, Kern County Congressman and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said a new surge testing site will be operational Wednesday afternoon at 2.

The site will be at the Kern County Fairgrounds. It will be a free, drive-thru testing site that will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.

As of Wednesday morning's virtual press conference, there had been nearly 17,000 positive cases of COVID-19 in Kern County.

Joining McCarthy in Wednesday's virtual press conference was Admiral Brett Giroir, the White House coronavirus testing coordinator and Matt Constantine, director of Kern County Public Health.

Giroir said the surge testing site will have the capability to conduct 60,000 thousand tests over the course of two weeks, or roughly 5,000 tests a day.

He said Kern County had been one of the candidates for a surge testing site, and after conversations with McCarthy, the government was able to make it come to fruition.

The hope, he said is to help slow the spread of the coronavirus.

"If you do things right, you can really turn it around quickly."

Giroir said the federal involvement will be supplementing efforts by county public health.

He also said the turnaround time for results would be between two and three days.