Abilenians find it difficult to get COVID testing


ABILENE Texas (KTAB/KRBC)- Rose Black of Abilene says her husband Phil started showing symptoms of COVID-19 on Friday (08/27). They spent the next two days searching for a testing location. Finally getting that test on Monday (08/30) All the while Phil’s condition was worsening.

A positive result kept Phil’s workplace from any exposure but Rose says the process of trying to find a quick and reliable test has left them both exhausted and is nothing a sick person should have to go through.

“It’s very scary to get it and not be able to catch it early too. and how early is early? I don’t know.” Said Rose.

This year the state and nation are no longer providing extra funds and or hands to open emergency testing locations such as the CARES act. This combined with in uptick in testing since the DELTA variant has resulted in a lack of testing and a much more difficult process for those searching.

“We have them daily and we test easily 50 people a day” Said Head Medical Director of My Emergency Room 24 hour care Rena Salyer.

My Emergency room does have testing availability but unlike most pharmacies their service is not free. And the cost adds up if you are uninsured.

“I would have paid whatever but you know we have insurance so we’re lucky” Says Rose.

Without insurance testing can cost up to $175 out of pocket. And over the counter at home tests aren’t much cheaper. Antigen tests running about $30 and more accurate PCR tests running as high as $150.

While The Black’s were happy to get their testing done they would have been much happier not having to test at all. Stating that if vaccines and masking were more widely practiced testing wouldn’t be nearly as important.

“I just want people to take it more seriously and wear their masks.” Rose says.

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