BELFAST — COVID-19 drive-thru testing at Waldo County General Hospital (WCGH) will be largely unaffected when the hospital folds the department that has performed the tests since the beginning of the pandemic into its walk-in care practice.
Effective on Friday, July 30, the Respiratory Health Center (RHC) will become part of WCGH Walk-In Care, located on the WCGH campus in the Biscone Building, at 119 Northport Ave., Belfast.
Because RHC and Walk-In Care share a common parking lot, the drive-thru testing program will continue without disruption. Starting on July 30, those who need to be tested for COVID-19 because they have symptoms or believe they may have been exposed to the disease should call Walk-In Care at 505-4567 for an initial screening. If the clinicians determine that a COVID test is required, they will advise the patient about the best time to come in.
To get to the drive-thru testing site, patients need only follow the “COVID Testing” signs once they enter the parking lot at 119 Northport Ave. Once they reach the site, they will be greeted by members of the clinical team.
The RHC was established early in the pandemic to conduct COVID testing and to care for patients with respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19. WCGH is folding the RHC into its walk-in care practices because the number of COVID-19 cases, as well as the volume of COVID testing, has dropped significantly with the early success of vaccination efforts in the state, according to WCGH, in a news release. Approximately 67 percent of Maine residents have been vaccinated.
For those who still need to be vaccinated, WCGH continues to offer COVID vaccinations at Walk-In Care offices. An appointment is not required, and there is no charge for COVID vaccinations. For more information, call 505-4567.
WCGH Walk-In Care is open every day from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Following guidelines of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, WCGH Walk-In Care has put in place extra measures to ensure the safety of patients and care team members during the pandemic, including a requirement that all patients and care team members wear a mask.
Waldo County General Hospital
Waldo County General Hospital is part of MaineHealth, a not-for-profit integrated health system consisting of eight local hospital systems, a comprehensive behavioral healthcare network, diagnostic services, home health agencies, and more than 1,600 employed and independent physicians working together through an Accountable Care Organization. With more than 19,000 employees, MaineHealth is the largest health system in northern New England and provides preventive care, diagnosis and treatment to 1.1 million residents in Maine and New Hampshire. For more information, please visit wcgh.org.