Coronavirus Illinois: Mobile COVID-19 testing site opens at Lake Zurich High School in response to rising cases

LAKE ZURICH, Ill. (WLS) -- In response to a rising number of cases in the area, a mobile COVID-19 testing site will be stationed at Lake Zurich High School on Sunday, July 12 and July 19.

Last week, Lake County, Illinois, health officials issued a warning about rising cases among younger residents.

Health officials said since June 25, cases reported in Lake County residents under 30 have risen, while the cases in the general population have remained steady.

The testing site is in response to multiple cases of COVID-19 identified among participants attending the first day of sports camp at the high school and at recent social gatherings, health officials said.

"Time is of the essence. We are recommending that any Lake Zurich community members who may have been exposed, regardless of age, get tested," said Dr. Sana Ahmed, Medical Epidemiologist at the Lake County Health Department. "This will help us identify positive cases and slow the spread of COVID-19 in the community."

The mobile testing site, located at Lake Zurich High School's Performing Arts Center parking lot, 300 Church St., will be open Sunday, July 12 from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. The mobile site will return on Sunday, July 19 to provide additional testing.

On Sunday, at least 600 people were expected to be tested.

A long line of cars stretched around the high school.

"With COVID-19, it tends to be asymptomatic a lot more of the time than it is not. So just because you are not showing symptoms does not mean that you do not have it," said Alex Igel, regional director of HR Support, which works with IDPH at mobile testing sites across the state. "We took over five National Guard sites this week. It is impressive what Illinois is doing compared to the other states. We have opened up all of this free testing."

George Tammo, the on-site testing manager, says the test itself is not too bad.

"At first I thought it was painful, but (I was) just teary-eyed," Tammo said.

He and his team are focused on using all the proper safety precautions.

"Keep safe distance, sanitize hands, use gloves, make sure we are all safe and looking out for each other," he said.

The Illinois Department of Public Health administers the tests, and results are provided by phone in four to seven days.

Coronavirus testing: Where to get tested for COVID-19 in Illinois, Chicago area

People do not need to be a student, faculty, staff or family member to get tested. The testing is free and open to everyone regardless of symptoms.

A phone number and name are required in order to receive testing results. Photo identification and proof of insurance are helpful, but not required.

Those utilizing drive-thru testing must be seated at a functioning window. Once you get in line at the site, you will not be permitted to exit your car. The site will also accommodate walk-up individuals.

All athletic camps at the school have been suspended until further notice. Officials declined to say how many students were infected.

As an additional precaution, all participants in the football, baseball and poms summer camps specifically have been asked to self-isolate for 14 days.

Chicago health officials made a similar finding; the group with the most cases in the last week are 18 to 29 year olds, who comprise nearly 30% of new infections.

RELATED: IHSA revises Phase 4 guidelines due to increased COVID-19 cases on high school sports teams

The governing body for Illinois high school sports also made changes to its Phase 4 guidelines.

The Illinois High School Association said the changes are "due to an increase in positive cases of COVID-19 among high school teams around the state."

IHSA is working with the IDPH to limit physical contact and increase mask requirements to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Limiting physical contact also extends to sports games and competitions against other schools, including 7-on-7 in football, an IHSA spokesperson said.
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