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‘The outlook does not look good': SA doctor worries about increase in testing at health care facilities

The city of San Antonio announced changes at testing sites

SAN ANTONIO – Worries are mounting for health care workers as the demand for COVID-19 tests is expected to rise.

The city began to prioritize free tests for people who are showing symptoms, and those who believe they are asymptomatic are asked to test at health care facilities.

Primary Care Physician, Dr. Saleh Jaafar said he has mixed feelings about the change. He believes this could lead to other problems in the coming days.

“If we don’t take control of the testing and the follow-up, the outlook does not look good even by next week,” said Dr. Jaafar.

He said health care providers should have been notified sooner so they can prepare for another wave people wanting to get tested.

Dr. Jaafar who works at Medcare Associates said his facilities are averaging 20 tests per day, but he expects that number to go up, which could pose a challenge.

“Am I worried a lot people aren’t going to be able to be tested? Yes,” he said.

Metro Health officials said the recent surge of cases led to new obstacles for the local health authority.

“It’s a challenging experience we’re undergoing right now,” said Deputy Director, Jennifer Herriott.

Herriott said the main focus is to get people with symptoms tested first. She said of the people who show up to the testing sites, many have no other option.

“Many of them probably don’t have primary health care physicians and have a hard time accessing a place that they can test,” she said.

Dr. Jaafar said right now his facilities have the capability to continue to tests, but he is unsure for how long.