More than 20% test positive as 300 still wait in line daily 

The drive-thru COVID-19 testing site in Webb City continues to test an average of 300 people each day.

On a recent day, when 301 tests were given, 70 (23%) were positive, according to Sami Johnson, with human resources for Ivy Medical, the Georgia firm operating the testing site.

She said it seems most who are coming in are required by their employer to submit a negative test result in order to go back to work.

There are also a lot of children with symptoms being tested. 

Curiously, Johnson said there are also some familiar faces. They come repeatedly, “maybe just out of fear.”

When the staff arrive at 8:15 a.m. for the 9 a.m. start, Johnson said there are 10 or so cars already in line. The wait can be as long as two hours. They start turning away cars at 2 p.m., when the cars already in line will keep the them busy until they close at 4 p.m. and process their last tests, usually by 4:15 p.m.

Ivy Medical staff members are taking two tests – rapid and PCR – from each individual

The rapid (antigen) test result is reported as soon as 20 minutes or up to three hours after testing. 

The PCR result comes back within 48 to 72 hours after testing.

For some, she said she believes there is peace of mind knowing the PCR test sample is being sent off to the lab and more accurate.

“We tell everybody the rapid tests are not completely accurate” and to be prepared in case the PCR test result is positive.

Ivy Medical, using the city-owned Clubhouse, at 115 N. Madison St., is open daily, except Sunday.

Schools back in session

In-class instruction resumed Tuesday in the Webb City R-7 School District.

Thursday and Friday classes were called off last week because of a high number of student and staff absences. There were about 1,000 students absent last Wednesday.

Kids were to get Monday off anyway because a professional development day for teachers is typically scheduled for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Superintendent Tony Rossetti reports that there were 700 student absences Tuesday.

On Wednesday, there were 55 absent teachers, but only two of those positions were unfilled by substitutes. “Really, the staff number is more of a concern than the number of students.”

He says the good thing is that the trend is better, perhaps because of the five-day break.