Tuesday, November 28, 2023

VDH Partners with Dollar General to Expand Access to COVID-19 Testing

There will be free COVID-19 testing a participating Dollar General locations throughout the state. (WYDaily/ Courtesy of Pixabay)

STATEWIDE — The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) is partnering with the Health and Human Services’ “Increasing Community Access to Testing” program to provide COVID-19 testing at no cost at select Dollar General store locations in Williamsburg, Norfolk, and Altavista.

According to a June 7 news release from the VDH, the pilot testing program, supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, began Thursday, June 3 and will go through Wednesday, June 23 on staggered days at participating locations.

The CDC Foundation, a partner in the testing events, will offer a pair of cloth face masks or a Visa gift card valued at $10 to individuals who receive a COVID-19 rapid antigen point-of care test at participating Dollar General stores until Wednesday, June 23.

“The partnership is designed to make testing opportunities readily available for vulnerable communities,” Dr. Parham Jaberi, acting district health director, Virginia Beach and Norfolk Health Departments and chief deputy commissioner, Public Health and Preparedness, said in a statement from the news release. “Testing is an important tool to identify individuals who are asymptomatic and to monitor trends in the infection, which is essential in stopping the spread of COVID-19.”

Rapid antigen tests are designed for a quick diagnosis of COVID-19 that provide results in approximately 15 minutes. The test is performed by a licensed healthcare provider using a nasal swab.

“Through this partnership, we hope to make individuals aware of their COVID infection, specifically if they are not showing any signs of illness. This is critical to helping stop the spread of COVID in our communities,” the release stated.

For the protection of shoppers and employees, individuals experiencing COVID symptoms should avoid entering Dollar General stores and seek care or testing at a healthcare facility.

“Dollar General is grateful for the partnership and constructive conversations between the VDH and the CDC Foundation on ways we can jointly provide support for complimentary COVID-19 testing for residents,” Steve Sunderland, Dollar General’s executive vice president of store operations, said in a statement from the news release. “Through our mission of Serving Others and our dedication to serve as a good corporate neighbor in the Commonwealth, we remain ready to help where appropriate and support COVID-19 efforts.”

The Dollar General store at 8766 Pocahontas Trail in Williamsburg will offer testing from noon-8 p.m. on the following dates:

  • Thursday, June 3 – Sunday, June 6
  • Thursday, June 10 – Sunday, June 13
  • Thursday, June 17 – Sunday, June 20

For a list of additional testing options, please visit the VDH website at: https://www.vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus/covid-19-testing/  For information about the COVID-19 vaccine, visit Vaccine Finder.

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