Concerns over accuracy prompt Garfield County Public Health to change free COVID-19 testing service |

Concerns over accuracy prompt Garfield County Public Health to change free COVID-19 testing service

A curative mobile van that provides weekly COVID-19 tests to towns across western Garfield County is changing the way it collects samples after state officials raised concerns over the accuracy of results, according to a public health news release.

Last week, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment announced that they will no longer be using oral swab testing for residential facilities due to the results yielding “false negatives.”

State officials say the oral swab test type isn’t sensitive enough to detect COVID-19 in asymptomatic people.

Garfield County Public Health responded to concerns by replacing the mobile van’s curative testing method with “nasal swab” tests, the release states. Nasal swabs are said to be more accurate and will be administered to patients at the mobile test sites.

The curative mobile van makes weekly visits to Parachute, New Castle and Rifle. Testing is free and does not require health insurance.

There are no additional safety concerns with curative testing, the release states. Public health continues to encourage people, whether asymptomatic or symptomatic, to get tested by providers located throughout Garfield County.

Elk Creek Elementary School

• 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sundays

• 804 W Main St., New Castle

Register at

Bea Underwood Elementary

• 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Mondays

• 0741 Tamarisk Trail, Parachute

• Register at

Garfield County Fairgrounds

• 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays

• 1001 Railroad Ave., Rifle

• Register at

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