COVID-19 Community testing event held in Vernon County Wednesday

Friday, September 25, 2020
Specialist Tanner Hawks with the 229 Medical Battalion out of Fulton, Mo., counts to 10 rotations as Daily Mail Editor Sarah Haney administers the test swab in each nostril.
Photo by Gabe Franklin | Daily Mail

With the increase of active COVID-19 cases in Vernon County on a steady incline, the county played host to a community testing event Wednesday. Held at the Vernon County Fairgrounds, anybody who is a Missouri resident was able to get tested for free at the drive-through event. To gain first-hand experience of the testing process, I registered to be tested myself. I have had zero symptoms and have not been in contact with any known case of COVID-19.

Upon arriving at the fairgrounds, those who were registered for the event remained in their cars as members of the Missouri National Guard directed them through lanes that were separated by cones. At the first stop, my registration was verified by giving my name and birthday to a National Guardsman who would then enter the information into a tablet. I was also asked if I had any of the COVID-19 symptoms in the past seven days. This was completely contactless for participants and all of the National Guard members wore masks.

Once my registration was verified, a sealed bag containing the test kit was placed on my windshield and I was directed to continue forward to the testing site.

At the testing site, Specialist Tanner Hawks with the 229 Medical Battalion out of Fulton, Mo., administered my test. I had heard unfavorable tales of the testing process and how the nasal swab went extremely far up into the nasal cavity. This test was different. It only went about one inch into the nose. Hawks removed the swab from its sealed bag and instructed me to insert the swab myself into the right nostril, rotate 10 times (as he counted the rotations aloud), and then repeat in the left nostril.

And that was the end of the testing procedure. Specialist Hawks placed the swab into a vial and sealed it. It will be sent off for testing and I should find out the results of my COVID-19 test within a matter of days.

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