Town Talk: Where can I get a COVID-19 test in Snowmass Village?
New COVID testing site at Town Hall offers quick, easy testing in Snowmass Village
‘Tis the sneeze-in: colder weather often means more runny noses and the occasional tickle in the throat, especially after a big day on the slopes in Snowmass.
But this year, that congestion could be a sign of more than a seasonal cold: many of the symptoms associated with regular winter afflictions (like a cough, runny nose and sore throat) can also be signs of COVID-19. So, how do you find out whether it’s the post-ski sniffles or a case of the coronavirus?
COVID testing can help narrow down the source, and plays a big role in mitigating the spread of the virus to others. And thanks to a new, free testing site at Town Hall (130 Kearns Rd.), it just got even easier to get it done.
The tests are free and easy — it takes about 5 minutes to collect a saliva sample. Roaring Fork Valley COVID Test, a regional organization that operates five sites between Glenwood Springs and Aspen, has partnered with MicrogenDX and local health organizations to administer the tests.
Results are typically available in 48-72 hours. The tests are offered in 5-minute time slots from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday through Friday, at Town Hall.
“We’re hoping folks are scheduling appointments as soon as they can,” said Snowmass Village Assistant Town Manager Travis Elliott. Though the first rounds of testing were “going along smoothly” on Tuesday, Elliott said the new testing site has seen a number of people walk up to try to get tested without a scheduled appointment.
Though there were no appointments available for Dec. 2 as of press time, the Snowmass Village location still had availability beginning on the afternoon of Dec. 3 and on every weekday in December except for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
The Pitkin County Board of Health strongly encourages anyone who experiences COVID-like symptoms (yes, even those that feel like a regular cold) to get tested for the virus as soon as possible. Those who have recently been exposed to someone who tested positive for individuals should also get tested promptly, but asymptomatic individuals can also get tested at the new site in Snowmass Village.
While a negative test isn’t a guarantee that patients are COVID-free, positive tests can help contact tracers track COVID-19 cases and helps ensure those that are exposed can self-isolate to prevent the spread of the virus.
And those who test negative should still remain diligent in following all five commitments to containment: social distancing, frequent hand-washing, wearing masks, staying home when sick, and getting tested whenever symptoms arise.
“It’s just one more tool our community has at their disposal to slow the spread of the virus,” Elliott said.
With quick appointments and easy access for those in town, the center is “designed for convenience,” said Markey Butler, chair of the Pitkin County Board of Health and the former mayor of Snowmass Village. The Board of Health has collaborated with a number of organizations in a team effort to open the site in Snowmass Village, Butler noted.
“We worked really hard,” she said. “We used to have a sense of frustration because you couldn’t get a test.”
Now, with the new testing center providing one more way to help mitigate the spread of the virus, “it gives you a sense of comfort,” Butler said.
Have a question you want answered in our monthly Town Talk series? Email Kaya Williams at email@example.com.