Where to get COVID tests ahead of the holidays

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SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – We’re now less than a week away from Thanksgiving and, after Governor McMaster recommended folks get tested before participating in any Thanksgiving gatherings, we wanted to see what kind of testing is available for those here in the Upstate and what that process looks like.

“We’ve been offering the rapid test for the last couple of months. It’s been pretty popular because most people who think they have COVID, they want to know as quickly as possible. And we plan to keep offering it until the pandemic is over or for as long as we need it around,” Nicky Gosnell, with ARCpoint Labs in Spartanburg, said.

According to those at ARCpoint Labs, rapid testing has never been more popular than it is right now.

“We have seen a spike somewhat of people coming in who are traveling for the holidays, because most airlines require that you be tested; and then people who are going to see elderly family or those with underlying health conditions, they want to be sure that they’re safe to be around them,” Gosnell said.

“I’m actually flying to New York City over Thanksgiving and for the holidays to celebrate with my sister, because she lives up there,” Jack Esce said. “I think it’s just a good safety precaution. Plus, with flying, I don’t want to put any other people at risk if I have it.”

To get a rapid test with ARCpoint Labs, you have to make an appointment online before showing up; but, once you’re there, they say you’ll know your answer before you leave.

“Once you get into the office, your typical wait time is only going to be maybe five minutes, no more,” Gosnell said. “We’ll let you have a seat, test you, then you can wait in your car for 15 minutes till you get your results. And then your official email comes within 24 hours.”

A rapid test with ARCpoint Labs comes with a price tag of $150, but many say it’s worth it.

“It’s definitely very convenient,” Esce said. “I assume the free testing is the same. I’ve heard people get their results back from the free testing pretty quickly, but I didn’t want to take any chances and then be stuck at the airport and can’t fly.”

For those who don’t want to pay, there’s a free drive-thru testing site at the old Spartanburg Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram dealership on North Church Street. You don’t need an appointment to get tested there, but if you choose that route, you may have to wait in line for 30 minutes to an hour, and you may not get your results back for one to two days.

Either way, those who’ve been tested say it’s especially important ahead of the holidays.

“I think it’s important to get tested, even if you don’t think you have it. If you’re going out all the time or working and doing daily activities,” Esce said.

“We have seen a spike in positives as well. So, if you have any symptoms whatsoever, I think that you should get tested to be safe–especially if you’re going to be around family, around a lot of people, you definitely don’t want to spread it,” Gosnell said.

If you’d like to get a rapid test, ARCpoint Labs on Southport Road is open Monday through Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

They do not accept insurance but give receipts for reimbursement from insurance companies.

Click here for more testing sites in our area.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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