DuPage County opening COVID-19 testing site in Wheaton
DuPage County will open a coronavirus testing site in Wheaton as COVID-19 deaths in the state's second-most populous county top 400.
The drive-through testing site at the DuPage County fairgrounds will begin operating June 16. Widespread testing and contact tracing will help slow the virus' spread while Illinois advances through Gov. J.B. Pritzker's five-phase reopening plan, officials said.
"It's my hope we can test thousands of individuals for the novel coronavirus, thus detecting and providing timely public health guidance and referral support for our residents who need it," County Board Chairman Dan Cronin said in a written statement.
The site has the capacity to conduct 400 tests a day. DuPage residents can access the site through the main entrance of the county government complex off County Farm Road. The Manchester Road entrance will be closed.
Residents don't need an appointment, doctor referral or insurance to receive a free test. Hours are 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, or until testing capacity is reached.
"Anyone can be tested regardless of whether they have symptoms or not," Cronin said during a county board meeting Tuesday. "The testing provided will tell you if you have a current infection."
Samples will be submitted to the state for testing. It's expected to take 48 hours to get results.
"It's important to have robust testing available to our residents, to assist us in learning how prevalent COVID-19 is, which will allow us to reduce the spread of the virus," DuPage Health Department Executive Director Karen Ayala said in a statement.
All the tests are self-administered. Testing personnel will give each person a nasal swab and directions through their car window. They then must swab their own nose without leaving their vehicle.
No motorcycles will be allowed to enter the site, set up where the county fair normally stages carnival rides.
The county also is supporting a drive-through testing site in Willowbrook. Beginning this week and continuing until August, the site will operate Tuesdays and Thursdays through Pillars Community Health at Anne M. Jeans Elementary School at 16W631 91st St.
Officials said the county support will double the number of people who are able to get tested and receive a physical health check. They do not have to be an existing Pillars Community Health patient or enrolled at Anne Jeans School to be tested.
• Daily Herald staff writer Robert Sanchez contributed to this report