Utah Navajo Health System Inc. (UNHS) and the Utah Department of Health’s Utah Public Health Laboratory (UPHL) are expanding local testing for the next several days in areas of southern San Juan County. The mobile testing currently underway is focused in areas of the county hardest-hit by COVID-19.
April 13th and 14th the mobile testing task force will be available at the UNHS Navajo Mountain clinic and the 16th and 17th at the Monument Valley location. The team will offer COVID-19 testing to anyone who self-attests to have symptoms, anyone who might be high risk or anyone who has had close contact with a confirmed case. Tests are free and open to everyone regardless of statehood or tribal affiliation. Due to a national shortage, testing is hard to get, but we hope this testing campaign gives answers to a lot of area residents. After this week, local providers will continue testing but only for those patients who show serious symptoms and who are at high risk.
Health officials want the public to be aware that due to this expansion of local testing, the official county case counts reflected at coronavirus.utah.gov may see a rapid uptick as additional cases are identified.
“We want the public to understand that over the next few days, we expect the number of confirmed cases in the county to increase rapidly,” says Kirk Benge, Director of San Juan County Public Health, “The count of confirmed cases will be driven primarily as a result of improved testing and case identification, not as a result of the further recent spread of the virus”. All residents should continue to follow state, tribal, and federal precautions as directed.