Panama City Beach adds mobile testing sites

Local News

PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — The Florida Department of Health has established a goal to test two percent of the population as a part of the state’s phase one re-opening strategy beginning May 4.

To meet this goal in the month of May, the Florida Department of Health in Bay County (DOH-Bay) is coordinating with community partners to expand testing offered to meet daily targets. Initially, the primary focus is virus testing from nasal swabs to will help identify those that need contact tracing.  

“We are excited to lift testing criteria restrictions and bring testing to Panama City Beach to achieve the goal of reaching two percent of the population,” said Sandon S. Speedling, MHS, CPM, CPH, Administrator and Health Officer, DOH-Bay. “We will continue to test high priority clients with symptoms at DOH-Bay.”  

Symptoms of a possible infection with COVID-19, include: fever, cough, shortness of breath, chills, muscle pain, new loss of taste or smell, vomiting or diarrhea, and/or sore throat. Community-based testing options are available at no out-of-pocket costs through the following:  

MAY2DAY TESTING SITES 
Where When Who How 
Panama City Beach Sports Complex 
50 Chip Seal Pkwy, Panama City Beach, FL 32407
Tuesday, May 12 
9 am – 1 pm  
Adults 18+ Drive through, no appointment needed 
Gulf Beach Baptist  
10620 Hutchison Blvd, Panama City Beach, FL 32407
Thursday, May 14  
9 am – 1 pm  
Adults 18+ Drive through, no appointment needed 
TRADITIONAL COMMUNITY BASED TESTING 
Where When Who How 
DOH-Bay 
597 W 11
th ST  
Panama City, FL 32401 
Call during normal business hours M-F from 8 am – 5 pm for an appointment.  High priority patients with symptoms Call (850) 872-4455 for screening.   No costs.  
PanCare Health Bay County Fairgrounds 
2230 East 15th Street 
Panama City, FL 32405  Arnold High School  
550 Alf Coleman Rd  
Panama City Beach, FL 32407 
Call the COVID-19 hotline at (850) 215-4181 M-F from 9 am – 4 pm. All persons with or without symptoms Call (850) 215-4181 for screening.  No out of pocket costs.  
Ascension Medical Group    
Tommy Oliver Stadium 
351 E 13
th ST 
Panama City, FL 32401 
Tu and Th from 9 am – 1 pm.  
  Call (850) 746-2684 during normal business hours for an appointment.  
All persons with symptoms  Asymptomatic health care workers and first responders    Call (850) 746-2684 for screening.   No out of pocket costs.   

“We’re hoping through that that we can conduct contact tracing and of course the ultimate goal would be to stop the spread of COVID-19. So this will help us to know also what the infection rate is within the community and give us a good idea with this population sample of what that looks like,” explained Heather Kretzer, Florida Department of Health in Bay County Public Information Officer.

As part of the May2Day efforts, additional mobile testing sites will be announced at a later date. For a map of testing locations, including private options that accept insurance, visit BayHealthCOVID19.com. 

The May2Day tests will be processed by private labs with results typically in one-week. A member of the DOH-Bay staff will contact you with your results and instructions once they are returned. We continue to ask high-priority patients to make an appointment so those tests can be sent to the Bureau of Public Health labs which offers a slightly faster turn-around time.

High priority patients include; hospitalized patients, healthcare facility workers, workers in congregate living settings, and first responders with symptoms, and residents in long-term care facilities or other congregate living settings, including correctional and detention facilities and shelters, with symptoms. If you meet the above criteria, stop the spread and call ahead to DOH-Bay at (850) 872-4455 for screening. 

Targets have been established based on two percent of the county population over a 27-day period in the month of May. For Bay County, this means testing 135 persons daily. DOH-Bay is working on implementing plans to meet daily testing targets.  

The State will provide resources to DOH-Bay to assist with implementation of this strategy. DOH-Bay will be provided with viral transport media or an alternative, testing vials and swabs and laboratory slots at a contracted lab in in quantities to meet daily goals automatically. For DOH-Bay there will be allocated 150 daily.  

For more Information on COVID-19 

For text alert updates from the Florida Department of Health in Bay County, text bayhealth to 888-777. For additional information specific to Bay County, visit BayHealthCOVID19.com. You may also contact the Citizens Information Center 7 days a week from 10 am – 6 pm at (850) 248-6090 or email ask@baycountyfl.gov.  

For state level text alerts in the fight against COVID-19, text FLCOVID19 to 888-777.  

To find the most up-to-date information and guidance on COVID-19, please visit the Department of Health’s dedicated COVID-19 website. For information and advisories from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), please visit the CDC COVID-19 website. For more information about current travel advisories issued by the U.S. Department of State, please visit the travel advisory website. 

For any other questions related to COVID-19 in Florida, please contact the Department’s dedicated COVID-19 Call Center by calling (866) 779-6121. The Call Center is available 24 hours per day. Inquiries may also be emailed to COVID-19@flhealth.gov

The free StrongerThanC19 app is available to both iOS and Android users and can be downloaded from the Apple or Google app stores. 

The StrongerThanC19 app and website are designed to gather information to help the Department of Health track and slow the spread of COVID-19 in Florida; they are not intended to be used as a symptom checker designed to dispense medical advice. 


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