PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — One of Philadelphia’s major coronavirus testing sites is shutting down as health officials brace for a surge in COVID-19 cases. There are two new coronavirus-related deaths in Philadelphia, bringing the total to 45.
With more than 3,700 positive cases in the city and daily growth expected, health officials announced the closure of one of the largest testing sites in South Philadelphia at Citizens Bank Park.
“After this week though, we will discontinue the testing site at Citizens Bank Park. The last day will be Friday, April 10,” Philadelphia Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley said. “The remaining test kits, supplies and other materials will be distributed to other test sites across the city.”
The federal government is ending its partnership with Philadelphia, forcing the closure of the Citizens Bank Park site. City health officials says it’s one of many federal coronavirus sites that will be closing around the country, but they don’t anticipate testing will be hampered in Philadelphia.
“The site probably tested 10% or less of all the tests being done in the City of Philadelphia, right now, so there’s lots of opportunity elsewhere,” Farley said.
There are at least 20 other coronavirus testing sites throughout Philadelphia.
For now, health officials say Philadelphia hospitals are not at capacity with COVID-19 patients. However, they are looking for medical reserves in the event there’s an overrun of cases.
“If you are a doctor, or a nurse, or a nurse practitioner, or a physician assistant, and are interested in volunteering, go to www.phila.gov/mrc … and put in your information, and if you’re needed, we will contact you,” Farley said.
City officials are still advocating for social distancing and wearing masks if you have to leave your home.