OFFICIALS: Testing remains critical as State continues to battle COVID-19

Coronavirus Updates

An employee of beverage maker Suntory takes a Moderna COVID-19 vaccine shot at their office building as the company began its workplace vaccination Monday, June 21, 2021, in Tokyo. Thousands of Japanese companies began distributing COVID-19 vaccines to workers and their families Monday in an employer-led drive reaching more than 13 million people that aims to rev up the nation’s slow vaccine rollout. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – As many begin to jump back into their day-to-day lives, health officials are reminding communities of the importance of still getting tested for COVID-19.

According to the Utah Department of Health, anyone at risk of exposure or experiencing symptoms should get tested.

“The number of people getting tested for COVID-19 in Utah has decreased dramatically in recent months and public health officials want to remind everyone testing is still important in this response,” the department reaffirms.

Officials state COVID-19 testing has declined from 32,536 tests done statewide during the week of November 19, 2020 to only 5,894 tests done statewide the week of June 14, 2021.

“Even though much of the focus is now on vaccines, there are still several good reasons to make sure you get tested,” the department details.

Why is getting tested for COVID-19 essential even though many are getting vaccinated, and rates are declining? According to the Utah Department of Health, there are six reasons:

1.      The pandemic isn’t over yet. In fact, now that new variants are circulating and some are even more transmissible, finding out if you’re positive and isolating can prevent you from exposing others.

2.      If you have symptoms and test positive, you can isolate and stay away from others. Stay home except to get medical care. Visit https://coronavirus.utah.gov/protect-yourself/ for more information.

3.      You should be tested if you’ve been in close contact with someone who tests positive.

4.      Some employers may require a negative test before you return to work.

5.      Hospitals are offering elective surgeries and you may need to be tested for COVID before you have the procedure.

6.      Travel restrictions are different in various parts of the world and you may need proof of a negative test before traveling.

Many testing sites are offered this week throughout Utah. To see where you can get tested visit: https://coronavirus.utah.gov/covid-testing-locations-list.

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