Overton County Health Department, with assistance from the National Guard, is conducting drive-thru COVID-19 testing.

On Monday, March 30, Health Dept. staff were assisted by Technical Sgt. Leigh Crane and Technical Sgt. Jonathan Crane from Air National Guard 118th Medical Group at Berry Field in Nashville, along with PFC David Mircea of Army National Guard 230th Signal Company in Nashville.

Drive-thru testing is available from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday at Overton County Health Dept., located at 5880 Bradford Hicks Drive.

Technical Sgt. Leigh Crane said, “We’ll wave you in, we’ll collect your patient information, and we’ll do the testing. The testing itself takes about 10 seconds.”

The information taken is for contact purposes and will be kept confidential.

“You will be contacted by phone once your lab results come back,” she said.

Andy Langford, director of Overton County Health Dept., said “We ask that people call the Health Department, our number here is 823-6260, for more information on possible assessment and testing about the COVID-19 virus.

“We’re right next to Livingston Academy on the bypass,” he added.

He expressed gratitude that Gov. Bill Lee has made the National Guard available to help.

“The National Guard is here in a humanitarian medical effort working with Overton County Health Department, and we welcome them here to provide testing and free up some of our medical capabilities that we have here at the Health Department, but also private physicians to take some of the stress off them to try to increase assessment and testing during this time where we’ve been trying to deal with the COVID-19 virus,” Langford said.

Megan Reeder, nursing supervisor at Overton County Health Dept., gave some recommendations during the pandemic, such as social distancing and keeping groups to less than 10 people.

“We recommend you staying home as much as possible,” Reeder said. “We understand that there are some necessary things that you’re going to have to do and necessary business, grocery shopping, things like that you have to do, but we please ask you that if you don’t have business out and about, just stay home.”

She strongly urged, “Stay home if you’re sick.”

Hand washing continues to be a very important regimen, not just during the pandemic, but always.

“Hand hygiene is something that is very important,” Reeder said. “We recommend washing your hands with warm soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or you can sing ‘Happy Birthday’ twice is a good way to remember it. Soap and water is best.”

Hand sanitizer is also recommended, if you can find any.

She also urged being respectful of others by covering nose and mouth when sneezing or coughing.

“The best way to do that is with a clean tissue,” Reeder said.

Also coughing or sneezing into your elbow or shirt collar is recommended if a tissue is not available, according to Reeder.

“Be respectful of others and try to be as hygienic as possible,” she said.

Anyone experiencing the COVID-19 symptoms of fever, shortness of breath, and cough can checked with this drive-thru testing. No appointment is necessary.

Langford said, “We ask that you have patience and work with us. We’re doing everything we can to provide public health services and do what we can to protect the community.”

He also provided the following resources for more information: Tennessee Public Information line at 877-857-2945; and Upper Cumberland Region hotline number 931-646-7586, which is available between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.