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Company providing free COVID tests not sending results to Brazos County Health District

One company operating two free testing sites in Brazos County has yet to share any results with county health officials, KBTX has learned.
Published: Jan. 6, 2022 at 4:30 PM CST
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COLLEGE STATION, Texas (KBTX) - COVID-19 testing locations in our region are seeing a surge of people wanting to know their status but one company has not been sharing results with county health officials, KBTX has learned.

The Brazos County Health District confirmed Thursday afternoon two testing sites run by the company called Center for COVID Control has not shared any results with county health officials. For the last few weeks, the company has been running free testing sites on Texas Avenue near Southwest Parkway near Planet Fitness and on Woodville Road near Highway 6 in Bryan.

That data is important to have because it allows the health district to track COVID-19 in our community, but without it, daily new COVID-19 numbers are being underreported for Brazos County, a challenge already presented by popular at-home test results.

“There’s a wide variety of reasons why people want to get tested right now. There are a lot of other viruses going around like cold and flu and there’s also a lot of allergies. It is cedar fever season and it can bring someone a lot of peace of mind to go get tested,” said Mary Parrish, with the Brazos County Health District.

Parrish said the health district is reaching out to the Center For COVID Control to try and gain access to their data.

The health district says if you have received a positive test result from their sites you should notify your healthcare provider.

KBTX has reached out to the company to ask why those results aren’t being shared at this time but so far our calls have not been returned.

The company’s website doesn’t say specifically where it’s based but it claims to have more than 300 free COVID testing locations nationwide with many in the Chicago area.

Meanwhile, businesses near the testing location on Texas Avenue at Southwest Parkway say each day a long line of vehicles are snaked through the parking lot.

“We’ve had different customers just commenting, ‘It’s hard you know. I’m coming. It’s taken me a while to get through the parking lot’, so we’ve definitely seen a surge,” said Deborah Horan, owner of Play Oasis.

Horan’s business is in that same shopping center and is glad to see free testing options in the area despite the congestion it’s bringing where she works.

“If they’re having any symptoms, and I’ve actually had myself tested even though I have common allergy and sinus issues, but just to make sure everything’s ok,” Horan said.

“There are tons and tons and tons of people and it’s all day long,” said Phyllis Babin, Empowerment Med Employee. “Every time I come to work there’s a long line and then it branches out like three different lines and I have a hard time getting into work. It takes me maybe you know a minute or more,” said Babin.

“We certainly understand the impact on the community and the need for that,” said Horan, about ongoing testing.

Nationwide pop-up COVID testing sites are coming under more scrutiny and officials are urging people to be careful with sharing personal information. The most you should have to share with any testing site is your name, identification, contact information, and maybe an insurance card.

You should never have to share financial information, bank account information, provide a credit or debit card or provide a social security number.

According to a report from KPRC-TV in Houston, officials are discussing strategies to crack down on illegitimate pop-up COVID testing sites that have been an issue in that area. Currently, the Texas Department of State Health does not regulate nor register COVID testing sites.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has provided a list of ways to avoid COVID-19 scams.

The federal agency says scammers are using telemarketing calls, text messages, social media platforms, and door-to-door visits to perpetrate COVID-19-related scams.

Click here to learn more.

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