Mercy Medical Center Mt. Shasta is offering COVID-19 screenings for essential workers who live in Siskiyou County.

Mercy Medical Center Mt. Shasta is offering COVID-19 screenings for essential workers who live in Siskiyou County.

The testing program, which began this week, is part of a county-wide push by Siskiyou County Public Health to prepare to enter Stage 2 of the state’s reopening plan. It’s initially open to first responders; but all essential workers can eventually be tested.

We did about 25 tests the first day, Tuesday (May 19), Dignity Health North State spokesperson Allison Hendrickson said in an email to the Record Searchlight.

Medical professionals, police and firefighters get priority screening. Afterward testing will begin for other essential workers: People in food services, agriculture and other industries.

Patients won’t incur out-of-pocket costs for the test, Hendrickson said.

Siskiyou County Public Health gave 1,000 collection tests to Mercy Mount Shasta to get their screening program up and running, Hendrickson said.

The screening program is part of a county-wide push, spearheaded by county public health officials, to prepare to open some businesses and services with restrictions.

Testing efforts are vital to moving into Stage 2 of California’s reopening plan, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection information officer Suzie Brady said. That bump in testing began in early May.

Those who come for tests can expect results in three to four days. Negative results are mailed to patients. Results will also be available on each patient’s online medical portal within seven business days. If someone tests positive for the coronavirus, a Siskiyou County Public Health Department representative will call them with further instructions.

Testing is only for those who have no symptoms, Hendrickson, said. Those who do should call the hospital at 926-6111, or Siskiyou County Public Health at 442-2333 for further instructions.

Screenings are by appointment only. Tests are performed between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at Dignity Health Mercy Medical Center, 902 Pine St. in Mount Shasta. Call 926-7132 to schedule a time.

Jessica Skropanic is features reporter for the Record Searchlight/USA Today Network.