SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — If you’re striking out trying to find an at-home COVID test kit at a pharmacy or struggling to book an appointment for a PCR test, there’s now another option for Central New Yorkers.
Tuesday marked the first day of free, asymptomatic COVID testing open to the public at the Syracuse University Carrier Dome.
The clinic is a part of Governor Kathy Hochul’s statewide initiative to make COVID testing more accessible for New Yorkers.
Colleges across the state, like Syracuse University, SUNY Oswego, and SUNY Cortland, are hosting temporary clinics before students return to campus following winter break.
Testing at the Dome is open to the public. No appointments are necessary and it’s free of charge, but only for those who are not showing symptoms of COVID-19.
With the help of 10 National Guard members, the COVID-19 tests offered at the Dome are the same PCR saliva tests SU students and faculty take during a semester.
In the exact same way that our students, faculty and staff have experienced testing throughout the pandemic, now our community is experiencing what they experienced.Mike Haynie, Vice Chancellor, Syracuse University
After you take the saliva test, within 24-48 hours, you’ll either receive a negative or positive result.
Because each individual test is a part of pool surveillance, if the entire salvia test pool comes back positive, the lab will then re-test each individual sample to find out who exactly has COVID-19.
If your individual test does come back positive, Syracuse University is encouraging you get a PCR medical diagnostic test (nasal swab) to confirm the positive result.
After Enrique Valencia of Liverpool found out someone he came in contact with recently tested positive for COVID-19, he wanted to get a test ASAP.
“This was the first place I heard of that actually had available testing. A lot of the other places require appointments and they were booked out until January 5/6,” Valencia explained. “I just didn’t want to wait that long so it’s good this opened up.”
Jayne Humbert feels the same. As someone who lives only minutes away from the Syracuse University campus, she’s thankful to have a clinic right in her backyard.
I’ve gone several places and they’re taking by appointments, but the appointments were made last week and so I can’t get in. This is just hugely, terrifically convenient and I’m very grateful.Jayne Humbert, Syracuse
Testing at the Carrier Dome will run through January 14 and is available Sunday through Fridays from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The clinic is closed on Saturdays. Again, no appointment is necessary.
Parking is available at the Raynor Avenue Lot and Irving Garage. Handicap accessible parking is available in the Quad Lot.
The University asks you not eat, chew gum, drink, use mouthwash or use any tobacco products for 30 minutes before testing.