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Free Covid-19 tests for asymptomatic people now available weekdays at AT&T Center

Covid test (SBG photo)
Covid test (SBG photo)
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SAN ANTONIO - With Covid-19 numbers rising and the start of the holiday season approaching, there's growing concern that the next few months could see large spikes for the disease.

Community Labs has made it safer for families to get together for the Thanksgiving holiday. It's free tests are available for anyone who doesn't have Covid symptoms.

The AT&T Center is the latest site for the tests.

"We want to find the people who are those silent spreaders," says Sal Webber, president of Community Labs. "We’ve had people as young as six-years-old self-administering this test with no complaints."

That's because they're pain-free and take less than 10 seconds to do.

"This is not the brain scrubber test that maybe other people have been through that’s very uncomfortable," Webber says.

All you do is insert a swab into the front of each nostril and twirl it around for a few seconds. That's it.

Within 24 hours, the results are available.

"We think there might be another surge here in December and January, and we want to be prepared for that," Webber says.

Community Labs can test 6,000 people daily. That number should double soon, Webber says.

There are now over 20 Community Labs testing sites. That includes several school districts, businesses and the Ramirez and Cuellar communities centers, which also test from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays, just like the AT&T Center.

"We want to make it convenient for folks who live on the east side of the city," Webber says.

Kyle Bruce got tested at noon today at the AT&T Center. There was no waiting and he was in and out in less than five minutes. A total of 148 people took advantage of the free test there today.

"This is an optimal setup," he says. "You have a very easy entry. I got through in 2 minutes. Right nose, left nose. It’s as easy as it can get."

Bruce is aware of the numbers both locally and statewide, and wants to do his part to slow down the spread, even if its inadvertent.

"I decided to get tested because it’s so widespread in the community now," he says. "You hear about silent spreaders. These are your most dangerous people. They’re not bad people. It’s just accidentally (they) didn’t even know they had it."

He doesn't want to be one of those people, especially with big family events like Thanksgiving just a couple weeks away.

Community Labs, which was created by Graham Weston and several other civic leaders a few months ago, will expand its hours the weekend before the holiday to help family members have a safe celebration.

"If you have family coming to town, you can come over (to the AT&T Center) as a whole family unit, get tested and have a normal Thanksgiving," Webber says.

Community Labs eventually hopes to test up to 100,000 people per day.

It's also reached out to city leaders in El Paso, where Covid is spreading at alarming rates, to see if its testing program can alleviate some of the suffering in that city.

Through Sunday, Community Labs had conducted 11,941 total tests, with 157 positives. That's a 1.3 percent infection rate.

Click here for more information on the local testing options.

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