New free COVID-19 testing sites to launch in south King County




Summary: Two new free COVID-19 test sites will open in south King County over the next two weeks. The drive-through sites located in Renton and Auburn will increase access to testing across our community.


Story:

Expanded free testing in south King County

New testing sites in Renton and Auburn will bring additional free COVID-testing to south King County where communities have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. Early testing is important to help prevent COVID-19 from spreading to friends, family, and the community.

Public Health – Seattle & King County recommends that anyone who has COVID-19 symptoms or close contact with someone who has COVID-19 be tested right away. Stay home and away from others while you are waiting for test results.


“We want the people of Auburn, Renton, and all of south King County to take advantage of these and other testing sites in their communities, so that they can keep themselves and their loved ones safe,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “Before flu season arrives, we need to do all we can to lower the rates of COVID-19 across our region.”


The new sites are anticipated to increase testing capacity by more than 1,500 tests per day.

For these two sites, Public Health is partnering with local labs, the UW Medicine and Atlas Genomics, in order to ensure quick turnaround times of testing results. Once a case is identified, contact tracers can work to connect with potential contacts quickly, when people are more likely to be highly contagious.


“Closing the gaps in testing access has been a top priority for Public Health as we continue to see the disproportionate impact COVID-19 is having on communities of color and those living in south King County”, said Patty Hayes, Director of Public Health – Seattle & King County.

“The testing sites are tremendous examples of the strong partnerships needed to address such a critical need of the community. HealthPoint, Valley Regional Fire Authority, Puget Sound Regional Fire Authority, and leadership and support from the cities of Auburn and Renton have all come together to offer everything they can to make testing more accessible and to ensure those without access to a provider can get connected to services they need,” said Director Hayes.


Matias Valenzuela, Public Health’s Equity Director noted, “By listening to our community and seeing the COVID-19 racial inequities, we know where the needs for testing are greatest, and it’s critically important to get more testing closer to people in south King County.


Support for isolation and quarantine

Some people may be concerned that if they test positive, they may not have a place to safely isolate. King County isolation and quarantine sites are available to make it easier to get through a difficult situation and to reduce the risk of transmission for those who cannot safely isolate at home, such as for those living with a family member who is elderly or medically fragile, or people experiencing homelessness. Call the King County COVID-19 Call Center (206) 477-3977 to see if isolation and quarantine services are right for you.


Testing site information

People are strongly encouraged to pre-register at the websites below to save time and speed up the testing process.

Clients will not be charged for testing. Bring your insurance card and driver’s license if you have them. No one will be turned away if they do not have insurance or a driver’s license. Language interpretation available at testing sites.

Auburn site: Opening Sept. 1, 2020

2701 C St SW, Auburn, WA 98001

Located at the East side of the General Services Administration (GSA) property along C St SW.

Hours: Monday-Saturday; 9:30am-4:30pm

Register for appointments at the Auburn location.

Renton site: Opening Sept. 8, 2020 805 SW 10th Ave. Renton, 98057 Hours: Monday-Saturday; 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Register for appointments at the Renton location (Registration for appointments at Renton will open on Sept. 5).

If you need help with registration, call the King County COVID-19 Call Center (open seven days a week, 8 a.m. - 7 p.m.), at 206-477-3977.

Testing location information for sites across King County is available at Public Health’s testing location webpage.

Additional resources

  • Visit Public Health’s testing webpage for more information about getting tested, including a list of free test sites.

  • Check out the video of what it is like to get a COVID-19 test.

  • Access to footage of the Auburn testing site set-up available

Quotes

“We want the people of Auburn, Renton, and all of South King County to take advantage of these and other testing sites in their communities, so that they can keep themselves and their loved ones safe. Before flu season arrives, we need to do all we can to lower the rates of COVID-19 across our region.”

Dow Constantine, King County Executive

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Auburn partners

"I am so pleased that the needs in South King County are being recognized and acted upon. We appreciate the partnership with King County and its agencies, GSA, Puget Sound Regional Fire Authority, Valley Regional Fire Authority and everyone from our staff that has worked so hard to make this possible. We hope this is one more step to help bring this pandemic under control."

Nancy Backus, City of Auburn Mayor

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“We are all facing the reality, risks and challenges of the COVID pandemic together. Community testing is a key piece in the recovery and management of the COVID pandemic that requires unprecedented collaboration and partnerships to achieve. The Puget Sound Regional Fire Authority is committed to being a trusted partner in the community and is honored to support this essential community service.  We would like to recognize the leadership of the City of Auburn, King County and the Department of Public Health in this team effort along with all of our community partners.” 

Matthew L. Morris, Fire Chief, Puget Sound Regional Fire Authority 

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“The Valley Regional Fire Authority is grateful for the opportunity to partner with King County Public Health and our neighboring fire departments to provide this vital service. Large scale testing is a critical element in the battle to defeat COVID-19. The VRFA is here to do whatever it takes to make this testing site a success.”

Brent D. Swearingen, Fire Chief, Valley Regional Fire Authority

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Renton partners

“I am very grateful to King County for working with us and establishing this COVID-19 testing site in Renton. This additional site is critical for residents of our community and South King County who are experiencing symptoms and need early-onset testing to protect them and their families.”

Armondo Pavone, City of Renton Mayor

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“HealthPoint is proud to partner in helping to stop the community spread of COVID in South King County where people and communities have been disproportionally impacted by COVID.  Partnership and initiatives like this are core to HealthPoint’s mission - to ensure a strong and healthy community.”

Lisa Yohalem, HealthPoint CEO 

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“HealthPoint is honored and excited to partner with King County Public Health in this new way to quickly make the drive-through testing site in Renton a possibility. HealthPoint will run the site and assist community members to get tested and if needed get follow-up care. Atlas Genomics is providing the lab and results, and Public Health and King County have funded, structured and made this possible.  What a team!”

Kathrina Westby Sharman, HealthPoint VP of Patient Experience and Operations 

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Public Health

“By listening to our community and seeing the COVID-19 racial inequities, we know where the needs for testing are greatest, and it’s continues to be critically important to get more testing closer to people in south King County.”

Matias Valenzuela, Equity Director, Public Health – Seattle & King County

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“Closing the gaps in testing access has been a top priority for Public Health as we continue to see the disproportionate impact COVID-19 is having on communities of color and those living in south King County.

The testing sites are tremendous examples of the strong partnerships needed to address such a critical need of the community. HealthPoint, Valley Regional Fire Authority, Puget Sound Regional Fire Authority, and leadership across south King County cities have all come together to offer everything they can to make testing more accessible and to ensure those without access to a provider can get connected to services they need.”

Patty Hayes, Director of Public Health – Seattle & King County

Providing effective and innovative health and disease prevention services for more than two million residents and visitors of King County, Public Health – Seattle & King County works for safer and healthier communities for everyone, every day. More at www.kingcounty.gov/health