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COVID-19 In Butler County: Officials Hope Testing Site Will Reveal Key Information About Spread Of Virus

By: KDKA-TV's Jennifer Borrasso

BUTLER, Pa. (KDKA) -- The first state-run coronavirus testing facility in the Pittsburgh region wrapped up on Tuesday after hundreds of people took advantage of the free tests.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health sent a "strike team" to set up a coronavirus testing center in Butler County. The free testing ran from Friday through Tuesday at Michelle Krill Field.

This massive testing will tell health and government leaders key information about the spread of coronavirus in the community. On Tuesday, KDKA met the last person to get tested, Cheryl Sams of Butler. She wanted to get a test after being around a hospice patient.

"I have what I think is a head cold, my back hurts," Sams said. "But I thought I would go ahead and have it checked anyway."

Over five days, 1,500 people got tested, according to testing company AMI.

"We had people of all ages," said Mille MacDonald of AMI. "We had people from 3 years old to maybe over 90. I saw many 90-year-olds coming through."

AMI says people who tested positive will receive a phone call within 48 to 72 hours. People who tested negative will get results by email in four to seven days.


Latoya Johnson and her three kids drove from Pittsburgh to get tested Tuesday.

"We went to MedExpress and they actually ran out and they couldn't guarantee that I would get on the list tomorrow," Johnson said. "I'm so glad they offered it here."

As COVID-19 cases continue to spike, Dr. David Rottinghaus — the chief medical officer at Butler Health System — believes the testing should reveal valuable information to help stop the spread.

"This will help us get a better handle on exactly what we can expect and what we can do as a health system and what the residents can do to help flatten this curve," Dr. Rottinghaus said.

The "strike team" is now headed to Warren County.

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