‘Fantastic’ response to Balclutha pop-up testing

Trainee intern Alice Lumsden prepares to swab Bronwyn Scott, of Balclutha, as Balclutha drive...
Trainee intern Alice Lumsden prepares to swab Bronwyn Scott, of Balclutha, as Balclutha drive-through Covid-19 testing station runner Karin Little looks on yesterday. PHOTO: RICHARD DAVISON
Health officials have praised the public response to the latest round of pop-up Covid-19 surveillance testing in Balclutha.

A drive-through testing station at the town’s Cross Recreation Centre car park yesterday tested 271 people, in an effort to check the virus was not spreading through the community undetected.

WellSouth chief executive Andrew Swanson-Dobbs described the response to yesterday’s event, and last Friday’s Gore event, as "fantastic".

A third public event will take place at Centennial Park, Oamaru tomorrow, from 10am to 3pm.

"It’s been a fantastic response from people so far, with many telling us they’re here to ‘do their bit’ towards Covid-19 elimination."

In common with all Covid-19 testing, the tests were free and it did not matter whether participants were symptomatic or asymptomatic, he said.

Balclutha resident Bronwyn Scott said she was taking part yesterday to help foster peace of mind.

"It’s good for all of us to check whether we have it in the community, and allow us to get on top of it early if it’s here," she said.

From Monday, testing would move to Queenstown, Mr Swanson-Dobbs said.

"We expect to be in Queenstown for four days, and will concentrate on areas where visiting Aucklanders may have been in contact with people, including hospitality workers."

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