Loudoun County has announced it will continue hosting free, drive-through COVID-19 testing events twice a week on Tuesday and Fridays, with the next two events Jan. 4 and Jan. 7 at Philip A. Bolen Memorial Park in Leesburg.
The announcement comes after both testing events this week closed early due to overwhelming demand, with the Tuesday event reaching capacity in less than an hour and today’s being filled up in about 90 minutes.
Loudoun Health Department Director Dr. David Goodfriend said the problem is the limited number of available tests. He said the demand for testing now is the highest it’s been since the earliest days of the pandemic.
“We knew it was going to be high—we didn’t expect it to be as high as it was today, which was over 2,000 people, and that was with us having to turn many people away, unfortunately,” he said Tuesday. Before the holidays, he said, those events were seeing around 200 to 250 people.
Facing that heavy demand, the county will be holding twice-weekly testing going forward. Testing will also begin at 9 a.m., an hour earlier than the events this week, and the second day of testing will be Fridays instead of Thursday.
“Increasing access to testing is important as we see a surge in infection rates in our region,” Goodfriend stated in the county’s announcement. “Additionally, because it is possible for fully vaccinated people to become infected and unknowingly spread the virus, getting tested when you may have been exposed to COVID-19 or when you’re feeling sick is a critical step toward limiting the spread of the virus.”
Since the COVID-19 testing program began, the county has held the free, drive-through testing events at rotating sites around the county. Because of the increased demand for testing, the county is holding next week’s events at the largest of those facilities, Bolen Park, and going forward will announce testing locations on a week-to-week basis based on demand.
People seeking to be tested should enter the park on Crosstrail Boulevard from Sycolin Road. The testing events are free and open to all, with no age or residency requirements and no prescriptions or appointments necessary.
In addition to the COVID-19 testing events hosted by Loudoun County, there are other testing locations and providers in Loudoun and the region. Go to the Virginia Department of Health COVID-19 testing sites webpage to find a testing location.
Vaccines are also now available to everyone age 5 and older, and are available from medical providers, pharmacies, and the county’s Dulles Town Center vaccination clinic. Go to vaccines.gov to find a vaccination site or loudoun.gov/covid19vaccine to sign up for a vaccine at the county’s clinic.
Anyone with questions about COVID-19, including the upcoming testing events, can call the Loudoun County Health Department’s information line Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., at 703-737-8300, or send an email anytime to firstname.lastname@example.org.