Coronavirus Test Efforts Ramp Up in Ventura County, With Drops In Wait Times

Jul 31, 2020

It’s a warm, sunny afternoon. Rosalina Gonzales has picked the perfect time to visit a drive-up coronavirus test location at Moorpark College, but there is no line. 

Health officials on the Central and South Coasts have worked out many of the bugs which initially slowed the coronavirus testing process.

In Ventura County, more than 110,000 people have been tested.  Testing capacity is now at the point anyone can get a test, even if they don’t have symptoms or a possible exposure to someone who’s tested positive.

Patrick Maynard is Director of Ventura County’s Office of Emergency Services.  The county’s four, soon to be five drive-up test sites are free, and you don’t need an appointment.  The only requirement is that you are a Ventura County resident, or work in the county.

Maynard says they’ve been able to reduce the time for getting your test results down from around a week in some cases to a few days at most.

Jonathan Kuo is a paramedic with AMR who manages the Moorpark College test site.  He says they’ve reconfigured and expanded it to reduce which at one point were hours long waits.

Gonzales of Simi Valley says getting tested isn’t a big deal.  She was tested once, and was negative, and now just took her second test.

Ventura County is operating four drive-up test sites from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.  They are at Moorpark College, Oxnard College, Ventura College, and at the old Ford Dealership in Santa Paula.  Next month, the county is opening when is expected to be a long-term test site at the Ventura County Fairgrounds. 

Free testing is available for everyone who lives in, or works in the county.  There is also testing by appointment at state testing sites at the Oxnard Performing Arts Center, the Thousand Oaks Library, and seven clinics in the county.

The situation is a bit different in Santa Barbara County.  The county’s test sites have been overwhelmed for the last few weeks.  So, testing is only currently available for those with symptoms, those referred by health officials, and for first responders and health care workers.