By MATT PIKE
St. Joseph Post
A free COVID testing clinic will be held on Sunday by the St. Joseph Health Department in St. Joseph.
St. Joseph Health Department spokesperson Nancy King says at the beginning of the pandemic the goal was to not overwhelm the healthcare system but now with the Omicron variant, that is getting harder and harder.
"We're two years into it, we have this very highly contagious variant going around, we have not only record number of cases, but nationwide we're also having record number of hospitalizations," King tells KFEQ/St. Joseph Post.
King says while symptoms may be milder in those that are vaccinated, the record number of hospitalizations shows that is not the case for those unvaccinated.
King says typically during these spikes you start to see the rise in positive cases first, but then
"You know, two weeks later, that's when you'll start seeing your rise in hospitalizations, and then the increase in deaths will follow that," King says. "Well, we're having the rise in cases at the same time we're having the rise in hospitalizations as well, so I think the Delta variant is still out there with the Omicron."
King says because of that you're still seeing a lot of patients that got sick during the holidays, along with the Omicron surge, which could cause more overcrowding in the healthcare system.
King says the free clinic will be held on Sunday.
"It's a drive-thru clinic from 10am to 6pm at the Remington Nature Center, you don't have to have symptoms, if you just think that you have been exposed to someone or work in a high-risk environment," King explains.
King says anyone that feels the need to be tested for COVID is welcome to come out to the clinic
The clinic is sponsored by the Department of Health and Senior Services.