65 people tested at COVID-drive up site in Devine; another testing site set for this Saturday, May 9 in Hondo

In the weekly conference call with Medina County leaders, they said many people took advantage of the free testing offered at the drive-up site in Devine, and they are launching a second drive-up testing site in Hondo this Saturday, May 9. The testing site is at the Medina County Fairgrounds, located at 733 FM 462 in Hondo. Testing is from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, by appointment only.

Registration for testing opens at 9:00 am on Thursday, May 7. Visit txcovidtest.org, or call 512-883-7400.

“We have a total of 20 cases, 4 active and 14 are recovered, 2 deaths, and 1 hospitalized at this time,” stated Patricia Mechler, Medina County Health Unit. “A total of 105 residents have been tested inside Medina County.”

That number does not include local residents who have been tested in Bexar County or elsewhere.

Emergency Manager Keith Lutz reported that 63 people were tested for coronavirus this past Saturday, May 2nd, and so we are awaiting those results.

“They were expecting to have a 48 hour turnaround on those tests we did at the drive-up testing site, but that’s changed to 73-96 hour turnaround due to so many people who are wanting to be tested. The labs are getting overwhelmed again,” Lutz said.

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“We are going to have another drive-up testing site this Saturday, May 9 at the Medina County Fairgrounds in Hondo,” Lutz said. “It is free and anyone in Medina County can get tested, but you must register by calling the number on the ad (in this week’s paper).”

“Basically, if you have any one of the symptoms listed on that flyer, you can get a test,” Lutz said. “They screen you ahead of time when you call to register, so they don’t have to do that at the testing site. I was really happy with the number of people who turned out at the testing site last time, with 63 in Devine. I think Atascosa County tested about 55 people, and Bandera did around 45 tests at their drive-up sites, too.”

Judge Chris Schuchart adds, “Increasing testing is part of the governor’s plan as we re-open Texas.”

When asked about their thoughts on the way activity has picked up with the re-opening Judge Schuchart stated, “I was driving around, not going into places, but just looking at it from my vehicle — I think I’ve seen more activity than I’m used to even seeing on a normal weekend. It’s like someone opened the gate and everyone ran out. I hope it doesn’t mean we are going to see a relapse of things.”

“I would encourage everyone to continue wearing masks,” Schuchart adds, “even if it’s not against the law not to.”

Lutz noted that some local businesses are taking it upon themselves to keep their staff and customers safe by requiring customers to wear masks. Some have chosen not to re-open their lobbies and dining areas just yet as well.

“I’ve had many small business owners call and they are wanting to do the right thing. They are not complaining,” Lutz said. “They are wanting to be cautious and so that’s encouraging.”

“I did see that post online about some saying a friend went and floated the Frio and then tested positive for COVID this past week, but it’s hard to know exactly where that person got it,” Lutz said. “But we do need to continue to be careful. Everyone has to do for themselves what you think you need to do to keep yourself safe.”

Mechler adds, “I can tell you I am staying within my small group of people. We have to do what we can to make sure we can continue opening up. People who are 65 or older or who have health conditions need to continue staying home. Protect yourself and protect others. We have to try to keep social distancing and that’s hard to do while you are down there [at the Frio River].”

Editor’s note: This article was edited to add testing and registration information.

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