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Anchorage

Drive-thru COVID-19 testing site in Anchorage will soon drop doctor’s referral requirement

Ne Tasha Herman speaks with people waiting in line at a drive-thru COVID-19 testing site at 4115 Lake Otis Parkway on Thursday, June 4, 2020. (Loren Holmes / ADN)

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An Anchorage COVID-19 drive-thru testing site will allow people to get tested without referrals from providers and expand who the facility may serve starting next week.

Beginning Tuesday, regardless of whether they have insurance, people showing symptoms may get tested at the site at 4115 Lake Otis Parkway without being referred there by a physician, Anchorage Health Department director Natasha Pineda said.

People traveling to the state who receive testing vouchers after arriving may use those vouchers to get tested at the facility starting Tuesday, Pineda said in a community briefing Friday.

Other individuals who may be tested there starting next week include patients needing tests before medical procedures, she said. The health department may also refer individuals to be tested at the drive-thru site if they were part of a contact investigation, Pineda said.

People who need tests for work, whether they’re showing symptoms or not, will also be able to get tested at the Lake Otis facility, according to a statement Friday from Providence Health and Services Alaska.

The site was originally set to close June 12, sparking concern among officials about access to testing in the Municipality of Anchorage.

But the drive-thru remained open, supported by the municipality, Providence and the state of Alaska with contracted staffing through Fairweather LLC.

Pineda said both the municipality and the state monitor testing supplies daily, and as of Friday, there were not concerns about a lack of supplies.

The site is open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. People seeking a test may register online at app.kelvin.care or in person at the drive-thru facility.

The tests involve swabbing of the nose or mouth, Providence said in its statement, and results will be emailed once they’re available.

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