BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The Baltimore Museum Industry is closed until April 12, but they are repurposing their space while closed to test people for COVID-19.
The BMI is pleased to announce that while we are closed, our parking lot will be used by MedStar Health to administer COVID-19 tests. It’s certainly not how we envisioned this spring, but we are grateful to be able to help our neighbors and local health providers. pic.twitter.com/xEXiAcSLas
— Balt Museum Industry (@BMIatWork) March 26, 2020
“It’s certainly not how we envisioned this spring, but we are grateful to be able to help our neighbors and local health providers,” the museum tweeted Thursday morning.
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The testing will be run by MedStar Health.
They served at least 15 people by noon and expect about 50 each day. It will be open seven days a week.
Dr. Liz Delasobera with MedStar Health said they picked the site because of the high number of referrals in that south Baltimore zip code. So far, they have been able to secure enough testing supplies to handle that demand.
“We have personal protective equipment for all of our staff,” Dr. Delasobera said. “I think the key here is these will be pre-screened patients because we want to ensure they meet the criteria for testing.”
Medical professionals discourage people from just showing up to emergency rooms as there is a potential to contaminate other patients. If you’re having difficulty breathing or a medical emergency related to COVID-19, call 911 and tell them you think you have coronavirus or if your go to an ER, try calling ahead so they know you’re coming.
Many healthcare systems are requiring a screening via telephone or video chat before you go to the testing sites. Again, you must be referred to get testing, no on-demand drive-up testing is allowed.
There are at least 580 reported COVID-19 cases in the state as of Thursday morning.