Alliant Energy testing center cuts hours as National Guard pulls out

Published: Sep. 29, 2020 at 10:47 AM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - Public Health Madison and Dane Co. is changing the hours for its COVID-19 testing location at the Alliant Energy Center.

Starting October 5, the site will be closed on Mondays and Sundays. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, it will be open from noon to 8 p.m. On Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, people will be able to get tested from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“Based on demand, we know this site is a valuable resource for our community, particularly for those who don’t have health insurance, our essential workers, and for our communities of color, who are so disproportionately affected by this virus,” says Ken Van Horn, Emergency Preparedness Coordinator for Public Health Madison & Dane County.

PHMDC noted that this change coincides with a “large decrease” in staffing offered by the Wisconsin National Guard, which had filled a majority of the shifts. Van Horn says, with the Guard leaving, the agency is prepared to pick up with the slack.

“We’re sorry to see the National Guard go, but are incredibly grateful for their herculean effort in providing over 192,000 tests at the Alliant Energy Center site since it opened in May,” he added.

Van Horn explained that even with the cut backs PHMDC will still be able to process approximately 10,000 tests per week, which he states is “well above” the number they need to detect active infection and prevent COVID-19 transmission.

Details about the Alliant testing location (provided by PHMDC):

  • Testing is done in the New Holland Pavilion at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison.
  • The site is open until the end of the year.
  • The test is free and available to those 5 years and older who may arrive by car, bike, or on foot. No appointment is necessary. Translation is available in Spanish and Hmong.
  • No identification is needed and immigration status is not asked.
  • Pre-registration is available in English, Spanish and Hmong, and is encouraged in order to get through the site as quickly as possible.
  • Free transportation is available for those that need it by calling the Public Health Transportation Line at (608) 243-0420.
  • The test is not an antibody test and does not indicate if someone has had COVID-19 in the past.
  • It is very important to limit contact with others until test results are received, especially if someone has been exposed to COVID-19 or has symptoms like fever, cough, or sore throat.
  • Test results are provided via email or phone call within 3-7 business days.

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