As more people get tested for the COVID-19 novel coronavirus, one thing they may have noticed lately is that getting results is not something that happens right away.
Gwinnett, Newton and Rockdale Health Departments District Health Director Dr. Audrey Arona said it is currently taking between five days and a full week to get results from tests formed by the district’s health departments. There have been multiple reports in recent weeks of people who were tested at pharmacies having to wait far longer.
“It’s true that there’s been such a demand for testing that, as we’ve tested more and more people, the labs are overwhelmed,” Arona said. “They’re infrastructure just hasn’t been able to handle the volume of tests that are coming in, so they are making changes and we’re working with them to change that — and that will change soon, we hope.”
As of Monday, there have been 15,534 reported cases of COVID-19 seen in Gwinnett county since March. There have also been 216 reported deaths and 1,790 reported hospitalizations in the state.
The county’s incidence rate is 1,599.56 cases for every 100,000 residents.
On Tuesday, the Gwinnett, Newton and Rockdale Health Departments reported 122,499 tests had been adminstered by the health department in Gwinnett as of noon Monday. The county had a positivity rate of 12.9%.
Gwinnett has the second highest total number of cases, and the third highest total number of deaths, of any county in the state. It leads the state in total hospitalizations.
Due to the increased wait times for test results, Arona said the health district is asking members of the public to stay away from other people until they get their results back.
“What we’re asking the public to do is when we test you, knowing that it’s going to take a little bit to get your results, we’re asking you to isolate and quarantine in meantime so that when they get their test results, they haven’t in the meantime transmitted (the virus that causes COVID-19) to whole lot of other people,” Arona said.
Statewide, there have been 170,843 reported cases of COVID-19 in Georgia since March as well as 3,509 deaths, 17,138 hospitalizations and 3,172 ICU admissions.
The state and Gwinnett numbers for Tuesday were not available by deadline.
Fulton County leads the state in cases and deaths. It has had 16,073 reported cases and 371 deaths.