Tue. Jan 31st, 2023

(Santa Ana, CA) — With Thanksgiving, Christmas, and other seasonal holidays upon us, the OC Health Care Agency (HCA) is reminding Orange County residents to avoid usual large family gatherings this year in order to protect themselves, their loved ones, and their neighbors from the spread of COVID-19.



Launching a new marketing and advertising campaign, “Who Should You Get Tested For?,” the HCA wants to remind residents to protect the people they love by wearing a face covering, washing their hands often, staying at least six feet apart, and accessing the County of Orange’s COVID-19 testing network to get a COVID-19 test. The ads feature framed pictures of various families and point out that you can get free single-swab testing for both the flu and COVID-19 at the OC Super Sites in Costa Mesa and Anaheim.

“Our County offers free testing for people who can’t get a COVID-19 test from their health care provider at multiple convenient test sites,” said Chairwoman Michelle Steel, Second District. “We have also been able to speed up turnaround times and get test results back within 24 to 48 hours, so you can quickly get the answers you need as to whether it’s safe for you to go out or if you should stay home. Getting tested is key to helping us slow the spread of COVID-19.”

Orange County has several options for people who can’t get a COVID-19 test from their health care provider.

The OC Super Sites in Anaheim and Costa Mesa offer free flu and COVID-19 tests with one-swab testing.

OptumServe (State) test sites in Buena Park, Orange, Santa Ana offer free COVID-19 tests for symptomatic and asymptomatic essential workers and residents who think they may have been exposed to the virus.
And just this week, the HCA, in partnership with Ambry Genetics, launched at-home saliva-based COVID-19 test kits.

For a full list all available County testing options, please visit ochealthinfo.com/covidtest.

“Orange County now has the ability to test more people, which is a powerful tool in combatting COVID-19 – along with wearing a face covering, social distancing, and frequent hand washing,” said Vice Chairman Andrew Do, First District. “Testing is available for county residents with or without COVID-19 symptoms, as asymptomatic people may be carrying the virus and transmit it to others while not even knowing it. I urge everyone to stay vigilant this holiday season, not only for yourself, but for your grandparents, your children, and your fellow neighbor. We can all do our part to stop the spread of this virus.”

Print ads in newspapers, bus wraps, bus shelters, digital web banners, billboards, and digital boards at the John Wayne Airport in English, Spanish and Vietnamese are all part of the campaign and drive people to ochealthinfo.com/covidtest.

“It’s important that Orange County residents know where to get tested in order to protect themselves and their loved ones,” said Supervisor Don Wagner, Third District. “Knowing and being proactive helps keep COVID-19 from spreading in the community.”

County officials and the OC Health Care Agency continue to see an increase in the number of lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases, aligning with state and national trends. Cooler weather and the holidays will push case counts even higher if proper precautions are not implemented.

“This is such an important reminder for family members who may be traveling over the holidays or getting together for Thanksgiving and Christmas,” said Supervisor Doug Chaffee, Fourth District. “With our case counts going up, it’s best not to gather at all to protect each other. We know that’s a hard message. We hope people will take advantage of the free COVID-19 testing.”

“This is simply not the time to get together with your grandparents and all your aunts, uncles and cousins over the holidays,” said Supervisor Lisa A. Bartlett, Fifth District. “Family traditions may be able to resume next year, but we must be creative in 2020. Send your famous fruitcake or sugar cookies as a care package. We want to see all those smiling faces in our picture frames around the table next year!”

For more information on where to get tested for COVID-19, and what to do after a positive test result, please visit: ochealthinfo.com/covidtest.

By Editor

The New Santa Ana blog has been covering news, events and politics in Santa Ana since 2009.

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