DeKalb switching to self-swab COVID tests at county collection sites

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11/17/2020 Atlanta, Georgia Nurses work to place their COVID-19 specimens into bio-hazard bags at a DeKalb County Department of Health COVID-19 drive-thru testing site in Atlanta, Tuesday, November 17, 2020. (Alyssa Pointer / Alyssa.Pointer@ajc.com)

By Tyler Estep

The DeKalb County health department will soon switch to self-swab tests at its COVID-19 testing sites.

Officials said they hope the move “will help individuals to become more comfortable with getting tested, as the swab will not have to go as far back into the nostril.”

“A provider will observe each client as they rotate the swab in each nostril and then put it into the collection tube,” a press release said.

The DeKalb County Board of Health currently operates three COVID testing sites. The shift to self-swab testing will be made Saturday at one site (the former Sam’s Club store at 2994 Turner Hill Road in Stonecrest) and on Monday at the others (the BrandsMart USA parking lot at 5000 Motors Industrial Way near Doraville and Greater Piney Grove Baptist Church at 1879 Glenwood Ave. SE in Atlanta).

The health department shared videos with guidance on how to administer self-swab tests, in both English:

and Spanish:

Nurses may still administer tests in certain circumstances, like with infants or children.

Testing at DeKalb health department sites is free and open to anyone wanting to be tested, but pre-registration is encouraged. Visit dekalbhealth.net or call 404-294-3799 and select Option 1 to schedule an appointment.

As of Tuesday afternoon, DeKalb County had the fourth-highest total of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Georgia. Of the 8,648 confirmed deaths reported across the state, 429 were reported in DeKalb.

Read the original story on AJC.com.