Long lines reported at coronavirus testing sites across mid-state ahead of holiday weekend – Tennessean

Brinley Hineman
Nashville Tennessean

Published 11: 26 PM EDT Jun 29, 2020

The lines to receive a coronavirus test were unusually long Monday across the mid-state. 

At the Nissan Stadium testing site, hundreds of cars wove through the parking lot Monday as their drivers awaited coronavirus testing. A police officer directed traffic as many of the cars held multiple people inside awaiting tests. 

Lorie Liebig, who lives in East Nashville, went to Nissan Stadium on Monday to get a coronavirus test but quickly left when she saw how long the line of cars stretched. She looked into walk-in clinics and tests available through CVS, which require an appointment, and couldn’t get in for a test. 

« I tried a few of the walk-in clinics, but one had a two-hour wait and the other put me in a virtual check-in line that never went anywhere, » Liebig said. 

She said since the other locations in Nashville are open until 3 p.m., she had to schedule an appointment for the following day. 

Daniel Mink of Germantown said he waited two hours to receive a test at Nissan Stadium on Monday. He arrived around 10: 45 a.m. and didn’t leave until around 12: 45 p.m.

Meharry Medical College is leading the testing at the assessment centers, said Nashville Fire Department spokesman Joseph Pleasant. He said that Nissan Stadium has seen « especially high volumes » of people seeking tests.

« With more people seeking testing, wait times will increase, » Pleasant said. 

Testing boom may be linked to upcoming holiday weekend 

In Rutherford County, the health department linked their influx of people wanting coronavirus tests to the upcoming holiday weekend. 

LaShan Mathews Dixon, a health department spokeswoman, said that she thinks most of the people getting tested in Rutherford were likely doing so as a preventative measure ahead of July Fourth festivities. She said she expected a rush the following Monday as well. 

While some health departments only offer coronavirus testing with an appointment, Williamson County allows walk-ins. 

The Williamson County Health Department in Franklin performed over 2,500 coronavirus tests last week, more than doubling what the site has seen in recent weeks, said spokeswoman Hannah Bleam. 

Last Friday during the four-hour span the department was conducting tests, health care workers swabbed over 500 people. 

The lines for tests wrapped around the health department mid-morning Monday as people waited approximately 30 minutes for tests. 

Natalie Alund, Shelley Mays and Helen Comer contributed. 

Reach Brinley Hineman at bhineman@tennessean.com and on Twitter @brinleyhineman.

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