NEW ORLEANS — Restrictions have loosened for community COVID-19 testing. Even if you don't have symptoms, Ochsner is now encouraging everyone to get tested, as young as 2-years old.
"The virus doesn't discriminate children verses adults and we realized children are potentially really effective transmitters of the virus," said Dr. Yvens Laborde, Internal Medicine with Ochsner.
Ochsner expanded its community testing in Orleans parish Tuesday at Asia Baptist Church. About 200 people tested Tuesday at the walk-up site.
It's for anyone who wants to know their status, symptoms or not, including children 2 and up.
"Children are not necessarily less likely to get infected, they're just less likely to develop symptoms of the virus so they're a significant source of potential asymptomatic carriers," Dr. Laborde said. "So it's extremely important they become targeted and tested so we can mitigate them."
Laborde believes testing will be a critical and essential part of our lives moving forward.
"In face, the more frequently you're tested the better," he said. "I would basically tell everyone, first of all if you've never been tested, absolutely get tested."
Testing is free and you do not have to have proof of insurance. Without a line, the entire process that includes a nasal swab takes less than 10 minutes. Results are available within 24-72 hours. The test will let you know if you or your kids are currently positive so you can help slow the spread.
Ochsner has testing sites in New Orleans, Metairie, and Mandeville this week.