With COVID-19 cases on the rise in Charlottesville and surrounding counties and the imminent influx of University of Virginia students into the community, many Charlottesville residents and officials fear that the community infection rate will rise further. 

At the same time, the Thomas Jefferson Health District plans to increase its testing capacity in August from 72 tests per site — or 216 tests per week — to 250 tests per week. 

The Thomas Jefferson Health District continues to offer free drive-through testing for ages 6 and above on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays at varying sites throughout the district. Testing is by appointment only and you can expect your results within seven days. You can see this week’s testing locations and times schedule an appointment here.

As of Monday, the district has conducted 32,315 viral tests. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that anyone who has been in close contact with a confirmed or probable COVID-19 patient be tested, even if asymptomatic.

The health district is not the only place locally offering tests.

CVS continues to offer free testing at some of their locations, with results in six to 10 days. You can schedule an appointment at a CVS testing site near you here. According to Tara Burke, CVS testing sites can perform “20-40 tests per day, based on laboratory supplies and capacities.” 

Both the TJHD and CVS are performing PCR tests, a nasal swab that tests for a current infection, and not antibody tests, a blood test that could indicate a past infection. If you want an antibody test, the TJHD website advises calling your primary care provider if you have one. Alternatively, the Central Virginia Health Services is offering antibody testing, with testing sites and phone numbers listed at the bottom of the TJHD testing page.

Starting this week, Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital is no longer holding free weekly testing events at Washington Park.

You can search for other testing sites near you using this map compiled by the Virginia Department of Health. More information about different types of tests and frequent concerns is available on the Virginia Department of Health FAQ page.

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