How To Deal With the Medication Shortage in North Carolina

How To Deal With the Medication Shortage in North Carolina

You can access the most recent news updates about the medication shortage on WSOC-TV and WCNC Charlotte.

What You Need To Know:

  • As of November 15th, 2022, North Carolina residents have reported issues finding several medications in pharmacies across North Carolina, including:

    • Tamiflu
    • Amoxicillin
    • Adderall
  • Tamiflu demand has skyrocketed thanks to a higher number of flu cases in the area.
  • Compounding pharmacies can create these medications to help with the increasing demand.

 How Carolina Pharmacy Is Helping With the Medication Shortage in North Carolina

As a compounding pharmacy in Charlotte, Rock Hill, and Lancaster, Carolina Pharmacy is able to create medications like Tamiflu, Amoxicillin, and Adderall in times of crisis. We are also currently working with smaller wholesalers, so we can keep our shelves stocked with these important medications. 

If your pharmacy is ever out of the medication you need, you can fill your prescription at our pharmacy with our prescription services. We will continue to keep an eye on the situation as it unfolds. We will also not raise the prices of these medications so patients can get what they need during the flu season. 

If you are not near one of our pharmacies in Charlotte, Rock Hill, and Lancaster, we recommend calling multiple pharmacies in your area to find which one has the medication you need. Some pharmacies are still fully stocked with Tamiflu, Adderall, and Amoxicillin while others are still waiting on supplies. 

If you have questions about how we create our medications, or you want to know what medications we have in stock, you can contact us today. We’re happy to help.

Signs of a Drug Reaction: Tips From Your Charlotte Pharmacist

Signs of a Drug Reaction: Tips From Your Charlotte Pharmacist

After taking medication for an illness or condition, you should expect to feel better. However, some drugs can have effects on the body and may cause adverse reactions. If you’ve ever taken medication and noticed an unusual reaction in or on your body, then it’s important for you to know why it happens and if you should change your medication.

Just like food allergies, you can be allergic to certain medications. Your body can perceive certain drugs as allergens because they are not recognized in your system. Unfortunately, even with a smaller dosage, some medications will still cause a reaction.

Reactions can range from mild to severe to life-threatening, which is why your Charlotte pharmacists want to help you better understand drug reactions, what to look out for, and how to find out which medications are right for you.

Symptoms and Causes of Drug Allergies

Drug reactions or drug allergies have the following causes and symptoms:

Causes

Sometimes, introducing something new to your body might trigger your immune system to believe it is a dangerous substance instead of a helpful drug. This will cause your body to use antibodies as a fighting mechanism to attack the new medication and try to get rid of it.

These antibodies are the reason why you get certain reactions after taking newer medications or eating certain foods. A reaction might happen on the first dose, though it sometimes will not happen until you have used the medication multiple times. In some cases, you will be monitored by your doctor the first time you take a new medication. 

Symptoms

Some symptoms you may notice during a drug reaction are:

  • Skin rash
  • Itching
  • Shortness of breath
  • Wheezing
  • Diarrhea
  • Swelling
  • Fever

These are mild symptoms of a drug reaction, with the mildest being a small rash on the body. However, drug reactions can be as severe as Anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis is a severe, life-threatening reaction that causes the throat to close up, making it hard for the patient to breathe.

How to Identify a Drug Reaction

Drug reactions or allergies are just your body trying to protect itself from substances it has identified as “harmful.” When antibodies are triggered, they release chemicals from your body’s cells, which triggers an allergic reaction.

A reaction will typically appear in the form of a rash, diarrhea, or difficulty in breathing. These symptoms–especially a rash–will occur shortly after the mediation has been taken, depending on how serious the reaction is. 

However, sometimes you have to pay close attention to your body to figure out if your medication is causing a reaction. Drug reactions can be very subtle, and it’s easy to assume that some of your symptoms are caused by another outside force, like itchy clothing or certain foods

How Long Will it Take to Notice a Drug Reaction?

Drug reactions take a few hours to two weeks to happen. However, it all depends on the medication itself and the patient’s body. One person might exhibit reactions to certain medications in a matter of hours. Others may experience drug allergy symptoms between one or two weeks. Some people may not even notice a reaction until much later.

However, in the case of a severe allergic reaction (like anaphylaxis), the reaction will typically occur within minutes of taking the medication. Sometimes it may take a bit longer for symptoms to show, but they will usually not pop up later than 24 hours from the time the drug was taken.

How Long Do Symptoms From a Drug Allergy Last?

A drug reaction rash will only disappear when the source of the reaction (the drug) has completely left the body. If you notice any symptoms a few hours after taking a medication, do not take another dose. It’s always best to get in contact with your doctor first.

If your reaction appears a few days or a week or two after you started the medication, you should also stop taking it immediately and reach out to your doctor or the pharmacist that prescribed the medication. Most drug reaction rashes will disappear after a few days or weeks as long as the medication is stopped.

In the case of an anaphylaxis reaction, a drug called epinephrine will need to be administered as soon as possible as a first-aid treatment. This medication will cause the patient’s airways to open up, allowing oxygen into the body and reducing swelling in the throat. The effects from anaphylaxis go away very quickly after treatment is administered.

Benefits of Getting Pharmacogenetic Testing in Charlotte, NC

A pharmacogenetic test is one of the best ways you can save yourself from an adverse drug reaction in the future. Figuring out which medications you need to avoid will help you make the right choices, whether you’re getting your medication from your doctor or getting over-the-counter medication from a pharmacist

The test doesn’t have to be a hassle either. You can get a convenient pharmacogenetic test in Charlotte at our pharmacy for your peace of mind. With a proper sample, we can test your genes and check the effects of various medications on them. That way, you can be prepared.

Reach Out for a Free Pharmacogenetic Test Consultation at Your Carolina Pharmacy in Charlotte, Lancaster, and Rock Hill

Pharmacogenetic Test at Carolina Pharmacy in Charlotte, Lancaster, and Rock Hill

Whether you notice a rash on day one of using your medication, or you start feeling it a few days in, the first thing you always need to do is stop the medication. Mild drug reaction symptoms can start as rashes or hives and then progress into diarrhea and fever if not properly managed. It’s also just as important to get a pharmacogenetic test when you notice an unusual drug reaction.

At Carolina Pharmacy, we provide convenient pharmacogenetic testing in Charlotte, Lancaster, and Rock Hill, to help you with any drug reactions you might have. We are devoted to your health and overall wellness, which is why we provide the highest quality prescriptions and personal healthcare services

Contact us to schedule your appointment today and let us help you make healthcare easy.

Pharmacies seeing an increase in COVID-19 testing

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — These days the phone is always ringing inside Carolina Pharmacy Arboretum.

What You Need To Know 

  • Carolina Pharmacy Arboretum was averaging around 100 COVID-19 tests a day primarly for traveling early in the summer
  • Since July it is now averaging around 500 tests a day 
  • The pharmacy also provides COVID-19 vaccines to residents and have seen those numbers increase as well

Ringing phones and curbside COVID-19 testing is the new norm for Kavel Bhathela and his staff.

“Moving to a curbside, and really a telephone-type service, was different for us,” he said.

Bhathela began working at a pharmacy in high school, starting out as a cashier and eventually working his way to the back.

But all of that experience and years of schooling couldn’t prepare him for a global pandemic.

“I wouldn’t have also thought that pharmacy would have evolved to be what it is today,” Bhathela said. “Especially the services we’re providing within the pharmacy with COVID, point-of-care testing in general (and) the vaccinations we’re authorized to do.”

Over the summer, Bhathela says they were only doing around 100 COVID-19 tests a day, primarily for traveling.

Now with COVID-19 cases rising, Bhathela says they’re averaging around 500 tests a day.

“Over the course of July, we really started seeing a lot more people come in with symptoms and getting testing because they were symptomatic,” he said.

Bhathela says they’re anticipating testing to increase not just for COVID-19, but soon for the flu.

“Right now, it’s still relatively warm outside,” he said. “We’re not really entering our general respiratory cold and flu season yet, so people aren’t getting other viruses and other illnesses, so when you compound that with the delta variant, we may see an even more increase chance in transmission.”

That means more curbside testing and ringing phones that likely won’t slow down for Bhathela anytime soon.

Bhathela says they also have been providing COVID-19 vaccines to residents and have seen those numbers increase over the last few weeks as well.

Traveling internationally? Carolina Pharmacy rolls out new PCR test, results in 1 hour.

Headed to Hawaii? What about Europe? Those are just a few of the many destinations still requiring proof of a negative COVID test, regardless of vaccination status.

6:44 PM EDT June 17, 2021

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Carolina Pharmacy has plans to roll out a new RT-PCR test, with results in just 1 hour. Typically, PCR test results still take anywhere from 2 to 4 days to come back.

Kavel Bhathela, a Pharmacist with Carolina Pharmacy told WCNC Charlotte he’s been trying to acquire that specific type of test for the pharmacy since December after learning organizations like the NFL and NBA were using them to provide quick, accurate test results to players.

With most sports seasons now over, Bhathela said he got the call and jumped at the opportunity, saying the rapid PCR results could now benefit travelers.

“We get calls every day where people are like ‘I need a PCR test and I need it today’, ‘I missed my flight’, or ‘my travel plans got changed’ or ‘I didn’t realize I even needed a PCR test before travel’,” said Bhathela.

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Even as more Americans get their COVID-19 vaccine — and as international travel restrictions loosen — most countries are still requiring Americans to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test before boarding their flight overseas.

Do your summer travels plans include Hawaii? What about Europe? Those are just a few of the many destinations still requiring proof of a negative COVID test, regardless if you’ve been vaccinated or not.

“We have some people who end up coming to us from the airport and they’re in a bind and they’ll get stuck here or they’ll have to change their travel plans entirely,” he said.

Up until now, the process for receiving PCR test results was time-consuming.

“We must first collect the sample, then ship that test out to a third party that’s processing that particular test,” said Bhathela, who said the testing site then had to wait on a third party to also upload the results.

Carolina Pharmacy, he said, is now handling the entire process in-house.

“With the new equipment that we’ve acquired and the new testing we’ll be able to offer, you’ll be able to get quicker PCR turnarounds, down to an hour,” he said.

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The test will be available beginning June 21, at several Carolina Pharmacy sites, including 3 locations in Charlotte and 1 in Rock Hill. The test costs $190, according to their site.

If you plan to travel internationally and are unsure of what type of test you’ll need and in what timeframe, Bhathela says their website also offers travel assistance.

“Because there is such a variation in what test is required, we do offer travel assistance to patients who do need help trying to figure out what test they need or what requirements they need to meet in order to get to their destination,” he said.

Contact Ashley Daley at adaley@wcnc.com and follow her on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

WCNC Charlotte

Traveling soon? Here’s where you can quickly get a COVID-19 PCR test for travel

Victoria M. Walker

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Editor’s note: This post has been updated with more recent information.


Testing is much more accessible now than it was earlier on in the pandemic.

As more people are vaccinated against COVID-19, some countries have dropped testing requirements for fully vaccinated travelers. But depending on where you want to go, a negative COVID-19 test result might be required — particularly if you’re not vaccinated or are traveling with unvaccinated children.

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If you need a COVID-19 test for travel, you might be wondering where you can get one, what type of test you’ll need to take, how long it will take to get an appointment (and wait for results) and what it will cost. To help you prepare, we researched where you can get tested in 25 major metropolitan areas. We found that some tests are entirely free, while others require a copay or can be covered with insurance. Some will require full cash payment when requested for travel (instead of due to symptoms or exposure).

Some destinations require negative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests taken within a certain amount of time — usually 72 hours — before departure. Many facilities can provide results between 48 and 72 hours, but that isn’t always true. Also, keep in mind that some testing sites deliver results over the phone, which likely won’t be suitable for boarding an aircraft or entering a country.

What type of COVID-19 test do you need?

Antigen test. Rapid test. PCR test. RT-PCR test. Antibody test. If you’ve taken a COVID-19 test during the pandemic, you might have been bewildered by the sheer number of options.

Keeping track of which COVID-19 test you need can seem daunting. Not all COVID-19 tests are created equal — and not all are suitable for international travel.

What you’ll usually need for travel is a PCR test (polymerase chain reaction). These are the most reliable tests for detecting active COVID-19 infections and are considered the “gold standard” of tests. In this guide, we’ll primarily focus on testing sites that provide these more accurate PCR tests, though keep in mind that some destinations — like Hawaii — only accept PCR tests from a specific list of testing providers.

The tests that often won’t help you with travel are antibody tests, blood tests that can identify if a previous COVID-19 infection caused your immune system to produce COVID-19 antibodies. Some countries also won’t accept rapid antigen tests, which check for proteins on the virus’s surface. These tests are popular for their quick turnaround times but are less accurate than PCR tests.

Check to see if you can get a rapid PCR test

Though PCR tests generally take around 72 hours for results, some urgent care facilities have introduced “rapid PCR tests,” where you can receive your results in as few as 30 minutes. That said, if you’re looking for a faster way to get a PCR test, it’ll cost you.

Some rapid PCR testing options include:

  • Complete Health Partners in Nashville, Tennessee. Results in 30 to 45 minutes. Cost: $250, not billed to insurance.
  • Urgent Medical Care and MRI in Jersey City, New Jersey. Results in an hour or less only for travelers who need documentation. Cost: $250 out of pocket, not billed to insurance.
  • Elite Medical Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. Results in 24 hours. Cost: $299 with $49 off if using the promo code “Welcome Back Vegas.”
  • Medical Offices of Manhattan in New York City, New York. Same-day results. Cost: $225 for the test, which doesn’t include doctor consultation.
  • Frontage Laboratory in Exton, Pennsylvania (35 minutes from Philadelphia). Offers COVID-19 tests for travelers with same-day turnaround time. Cost: $200 for an RT-PCR test.
  • WeTestU in San Diego, California. Offers mobile RT-PCR testing for travel. Cost: $199 for 2-3 day turnaround, $249 for 24-hour turnaround, $349 for same day, immediate results
  • Saguaro Bloom in Scottsdale, Arizona. Offers same-day RT-PCR testing. Cost: $279, results back the same day.
  • Venistat Mobile Labs in New York, New York. Offers RT-PCR test results in less than 24 hours; most results come back between 6 to 10 hours. Cost: $115 when using insurance, $190 without insurance.
  • DMCovid-19 Test offers travel PCR testing by housecall nationwide in all states except Alaska and Hawaii; it also has nine physical locations. Cost: $299 for next-day results.
  • Test Well in Reno, Nevada and South Lake Tahoe, California. Offers RT-PCR tests for travel with guaranteed same-day results. Cost is $149 for travel (can submit to insurance for reimbursement)

COVID-19 testing at drugstores

Entry to Walgreens drug store
(Photo by Don & Melinda Crawford/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

If you’re in a location without many COVID-19 testing sites, you may want to head to your neighborhood drugstore.

You’ll notice several major chains on the list of where to get a COVID-19 test, including CVS, Walgreens, and Rite Aid. All of these often offer PCR testing at no additional cost if using insurance or if you fall under some federal programs for those without insurance. Passport Health also has a network of clinics in over 100 locations nationwide, primarily for people who need a negative PCR test to fly or return to school.

Even better, you can make these appointments online, which may save precious time instead of waiting in a long line. Many of these locations also offer drive-up testing, where you swab yourself and don’t need to leave your vehicle.

Turnaround times can vary by chain and location:

  • CVS: Average turnaround time for receiving results from lab tests is one to two days
  • Walgreens: Turnaround time is based on when the sample arrives at the laboratory
  • Rite Aid: Turnaround time is between two to five days

Also, several third-party companies partner with major cities like Houston and San Francisco on widespread testing. These companies, like Color and Curative, offer results between one to three days.

COVID-19 testing for children

(Featured image by narvikk/Getty Images)

Many destinations have dropped testing requirements for fully vaccinated travelers. However, vaccinated adults traveling with unvaccinated kids may, in some instances, have different travel requirements. But many countries (even those with strict vaccination requirements) accept proof of a negative COVID-19 test for children ineligible to be vaccinated.

If you’re trying to get a COVID-19 test for a child, many nationwide drugstores serve younger patients. CVS and Walgreens serve patients three and up, while Rite Aid offers tests at no cost to anyone four and older.

The Pfizer vaccine is the only vaccine given emergency use authorization by the FDA for children as young as 12. The Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines are only available to people 18 and older at this time.

Take-home COVID-19 tests

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) expanded the testing program for international travel to the United States earlier this spring, allowing airlines to accept at-home instant tests that include remote supervision.

That’s good news for U.S.-bound travelers who may not have many testing options at their location abroad. Travelers flying to the U.S. can use a self-test (sometimes referred to as a home test if it’s a NAAT or antigen test with Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration). The test must also have a telehealth service that provides real-time supervision.

Abbott’s BinaxNOW COVID-19 Home Test is CDC-approved for travel to the U.S. Each test comes with two tests per box, and the company says to swab yourself twice within three days, with at least 36 hours between. There’s a second Abbott rapid test that you can buy at the drugstore, but it isn’t proctored and can’t be used for travel. Another at-home test, Amazon’s COVID-19 Test Collection Kit DTC, has received EUA from the FDA.

Mail-in COVID-19 testing options

There are many mail-in or in-home COVID-19 testing providers available. Some are not valid in certain states, and some are not available in all situations.

Most will not bill insurance for you, with Pixel being an exception to that general rule. Some mail-in tests are nasal swabs, while others are saliva samples. Some are only valid for adults, and others require a Zoom appointment. But, these are all the gold-standard PCR tests that are considered highly reliable.

Some of these companies have partnered with various airlines and the state of Hawaii as approved providers, so this can be a legitimate testing option for travel to the state. If your airline has a mail-in testing partner valid for your travel destination, we recommend going through their system as it may get your sample prioritized in the lab’s testing order.

Some mail-in COVID-19 testing programs include:

  • Everlywell: Results of the nasal swab available within 24 to 48 hours of the lab receiving the sample. Available to people 18 and older only. Cost: $109
  • Pixel by LabCorp: Results of the nasal swab are available one to two days after arriving back in the lab. Available to people 18 and older. No upfront cost, or $119 if you’re not eligible for insurance or federal funds.
  • Vault: Results of the saliva test taken via a Zoom call are available within 24 to 48 hours. The test is available to children and adults. Cost: $119
  • Azova: Available at Costco.com. The saliva test results, taken via a Zoom call, are available within 12 to 48 hours upon being received by the lab. This test is approved as part of Hawaii’s trusted testing partner program and for travel to Bermuda. Cost: $118.99
  • OnSight Safe: Results of PCR saliva-based tests are available within 48 hours after being received by the lab; expedited processing is also available. Available for children and adults nationally. Physical testing locations in New York City, Tampa and Van Nuys, California. Cost: Starts at $127.95

How long will test results take to arrive?

Most states or countries that require negative COVID-19 tests for entry (or entry without quarantine) use a 72-hour timeframe, from the test until either the time of your departure or arrival at the destination. Sometimes, however, the window is even shorter.

While there are exceptions, one to three days for COVID-19 test results seem to be standard across the country.

You may need to research PCR testing locations that promise same-day results or provide rapid PCR tests analyzed on-site if the arrival of your test results could make or break your trip. Several facilities on the list below reported delays in test results due to an increase in demand.

COVID-19 testing in airports

(Photo by PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images)

A growing number of U.S. airports offer rapid COVID-19 testing to passengers or travelers on specific flights or heading to particular destinations. If you can drive to the airport to get a test a day or two ahead of your trip, this could be a great option.

But we don’t recommend waiting to get a test until your travel has already started, as quarantining for at least two weeks at a connecting city will likely be an expensive hassle.

Some current airport testing centers available within the U.S. include:

  • Anchorage International Airport: Testing at ANC is free for residents and non-residents.
  • Bradley International Airport: Open seven days per week. If the passenger’s insurer does not cover the test, tests are available for $125 each. Results will most likely be available within 72 hours of testing but can take longer. Testing is only available to passengers traveling through Connecticut’s Bradley Airport (BDL) on the day of their flight.
  • Burlington International Airport: Testing is open to all at Vermont’s BTV airport Monday through Friday, with appointments recommended and results available same-day or 36 to 48 hours. The test may have a fee.
  • Dallas – Fort Worth International Airport: Those traveling on American Airlines can get a rapid test at DFW on the day of travel for $139, with results available in about 15 minutes.
  • Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport: Testing is available between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. Rapid PCR tests are $179, PCR tests are $106, and rapid antigen tests are $74. Rapid antigen test results are returned in about 30 minutes, rapid PCR tests are returned within 45 minutes, and PCR tests have a 48-hour turnaround.
  • Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport: Tests through the Minnesota Department of Health and Vault Health are done with saliva, return results within 48 hours, and are free for Minnesota residents and $94 for others. Tests through Wandertest include Antigen, NAAT, and PCR and provide rapid results in less than an hour and range from $99 to $199.
  • New York-LaGuardia: PCR testing is free with no appointments necessary in LGA’s Terminal B parking garage, with results delivered by phone within 48 hours. However, this won’t be very useful for travel verification purposes since the results are verbal.
  • Oakland International Airport: There are two testing centers at OAK, one in the airport and a second drive-up location. Only passengers heading to Hawaii are encouraged to use this, though technically, any passenger can book the drive-up location. Appointments are required, and there is a $120 lab fee for expedited processing and a $20 administrative fee for Hawaii’s mandated travel documentation.
  • San Francisco International Airport: San Francisco-based travelers flying on United Airlines to Hawaii, as well as select destinations in Central and South America and the Caribbean, can arrange for a mail-in PCR COVID-19 test. Travelers will receive results in 24 to 48 hours, and the cost is $119.
  • XpresCheck has a handful of airport locations across the U.S. PCR tests are available by appointment or potentially via walk-up; costs vary. Rapid molecular NAAT tests are hand-delivered within 30 to 60 minutes for $200, insurance not accepted. Standard PCR tests will be delivered 48 to 96 hours for $75, and insurance is accepted for lab fees only. Rapid PCR tests are hand-delivered within 30 to 60 minutes for $250. Insurance is not accepted.

Hotels offering COVID-19 tests

Baha Mar Cabana pool
Baja Mar Hotel in the Bahamas. (Photo by Nick Ellis/The Points Guy)

Pre-travel testing is becoming more common at hotels as dozens of hotels and resorts roll out plans to provide on-site testing.

Some current hotel COVID-19 testing options available worldwide include:

  • Carlton Hotel Dublin Airport: “Test, Rest and Fly” package consists of an overnight stay, breakfast and one PCR test with results in 24 to 36 hours. The package starts at $295.
  • Sofitel London Heathrow and London Gatwick: The hotels have a “Test and Rest” program, a package that includes a room and a PCR test. Test results can be returned overnight.
  • The Baha Mar hotel complex in the Bahamas requires guests to take a rapid antigen test upon arrival. The complex also offers optional PCR and rapid COVID-19 tests ($125 and $25, respectively) for guests before they depart.

Related: Forget free breakfast: The hottest hotel amenity is a nasal swab

COVID-19 testing is required to enter the U.S.

If you’re traveling back to the United States from abroad, you will need to provide a negative COVID-19 test result before boarding.

All passengers are required to get a viral test within three days of departure. Even if you’ve been vaccinated against COVID-19, you’ll need to provide a negative test before boarding. Airlines must confirm the negative result (or recovery from COVID-19) for all passengers, and travelers without documentation, either printed or digital, will be prohibited from flying to the United States.

If you get a negative test, travel and return within three days, the test taken before departing the U.S. will be accepted.

There are several exemptions to this rule. Travelers flying back from U.S. territories, travelers arriving via a land border such as Mexico or Canada, and flight crew members will not need to present a negative COVID-19 test.

Related: What you need to know about getting COVID-19 tested for US-bound international flights

Vaccine passports

Travelers may want to use digital health or vaccine passports to enter certain countries or be exempt from strict testing and quarantine requirements. But vaccine passports aren’t expected only to hold COVID-19 vaccine records. They can also be used to verify negative COVID-19 results.

For instance, New Yorkers can use the Excelsior Pass if they have had a negative PCR test administered in New York within three days; or took a negative antigen test in New York in the last six hours.

Clear’s Health Pass feature is being used to verify negative tests required at some sports arenas and to approve tourists for quarantine-free travel to Hawaii. CommonPass is an independent app that collects a user’s COVID-19 status and verifies their identity. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is also partnering with dozens of airlines worldwide on its Travel Pass app, which will host verified test and vaccine information.

City-by-city guide on where to get a COVID-19 test

(Photo by Summer Hull/The Points Guy)

Finding a reliable place to get a PCR COVID-19 test for travel with quick results can be challenging, depending on where you’re located in the U.S.

Because things change so quickly, you’ll need to contact the sites directly to confirm this information is still accurate. But to give you a headstart in your research, these testing facilities may meet your travel needs. If you encounter a location that should be added (or removed) from the list, or if you’re a healthcare provider conducting PCR testing, please email tips@thepointsguy.com.

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Atlanta, Georgia

Community Organized Relief Effort
Various locations throughout Georgia, including Atlanta
Cost: Free
Appointment required: Walk-up and drive-thru testing available, all sites subject to early closure once the 500-test daily maximum is reached
Turnaround time: Typically 72 hours

Summit Urgent Care
Various locations throughout the Atlanta metropolitan area
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: Accepts most insurance, no copay for virtual visits
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Three to five days

Peachtree Immediate Care
Various locations throughout the Atlanta metropolitan area
Hours: Drive-thru locations open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., though some locations are closed on weekends.
Cost: For most insurance plans, there is no copay or deductible required; a $175 self-pay option is also available.
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Typically three days

Viral Solutions
Various locations throughout the Atlanta metropolitan area
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: No out of pocket cost with insurance
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Two days

ARCpoint Labs of Atlanta-Northeast
3635 Savannah Place Drive, Suite 450-B Duluth, Georgia
Hours: Monday to Friday 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Cost: $169 for lab-based PCR test, $249 for rapid PCR test;  Self-pay option only
Appointment Required: Yes, but same-day appointments are available.
Turnaround Time: Less than two hours for rapid PCR test, 48 hours typical for lab-based PCR

Where to get a COVID-19 test in the Bay Area, California

My Doctor Medical Group
450 Sutter Street Suite 840, San Francisco, California
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: $240 for visit and swab collection, $125 lab fee for expedited next-day PCR results, $35 for customized additional travel documentation and certificates (in addition to lab report) if needed.
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: By 5 p.m. next day after collection

McCampbell Analytical
1534 Willow Pass Road Pittsburg, California
Hours: 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m., seven days a week
Cost: 3-hour results are $699, 5-hour results are $450, same-day results are $199 and next-day results are $129.
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: See above

Color
Embarcadero site at Piers 30/32, Bryant and Embarcadero
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: Free
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: One to three days

Alameda Health Systems
Various locations throughout Alameda County
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: Covered by insurance
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Two to three days

County of Santa Clara
Various locations throughout Santa Clara County
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: No upfront cost
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Varies by location

Downtown Medical Group
450 Sutter Street, Suite 1723 San Francisco, California
Hours: Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Cost: $225 for next-day turnaround, $300 for same-day turnaround
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: See above

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Boston, Massachusetts

Tufts Medical Center
276 Tremont Street, Boston, Massachusetts
Hours: Monday to Saturday from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m
Cost: If insurance does not cover a test, the cost is $135
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: 24 to 72 hours

CareWell Urgent Care
Cambridge Inman Square
1400 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Hours: Open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Cost: Covered by insurance, or $160 if paying out of pocket
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Varies

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Charlotte, North Carolina

BetterMed Urgent Care – Charlotte
Various locations throughout Charlotte
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: For those with commercial health insurance, the expected out-of-pocket cost for the medical evaluation and test is your copay. PCR medical evaluation and test will cost $159 plus outside lab costs in North Carolina for self-pay.
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Three to five days

Carolina Pharmacy
Various locations throughout Charlotte, North Carolina and Lancaster and Rock Hill, South Carolina
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: Rapid antigen is $89, Rapid RT-LAMP (Molecular/NAAT) is $145. RT-PCR (Molecular/NAAT) is $190. The expected out-of-pocket cost for the medical evaluation and test is your copay for those with commercial health insurance. PCR medical evaluation and test will cost $159 plus outside lab costs in North Carolina for self-pay.
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: One to three days

StarMed Healthcare
Various locations throughout Charlotte
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: Covered at 100% for most insurance carriers, or $199 for self-pay. There’s a $195 out-of-pocket fee for the lab rush.
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: One to three days

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Chicago

Howard Brown Health
Various locations throughout Chicago
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: Free
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Three to seven days

Innovative Care
1111 W. Diversey Parkway, Chicago, Illinois
Hours: Open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Cost: Covered by insurance, or you can self-pay $250 for the examination and COVID-19 test
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Two to four days

Prime Care Physicians
1355 Remington Road, Suite Q, Schaumburg, Illinois
Hours: Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m
Cost: $125 self-pay, most insurance accepted
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: 24 to 48 hours

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Cleveland/Akron, Ohio

The Centers, Midtown Office
4500 Euclid Avenue Cleveland, Ohio
Hours: Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Cost: No out-of-pocket costs for most patients. No insurance is required, and Medicaid and other insurance accepted
Appointment required: Appointments encouraged, with walk-ins available each day
Turnaround time: One to two days

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Columbus, Ohio

Hometown Urgent Care
Various locations throughout Columbus
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: Covered by insurance; copay or deductible may be required. Uninsured patients may be eligible to have the cost of their test covered by Medicaid under the CARES Act.
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Two to four days

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas

Ayass BioScience Drive-thru
8501 Wade Blvd Bldg 7 Frisco, Texas
Hours: Hours are shown upon registration
Cost: Covered by insurance
Appointment required: Strongly preferred. Walk-ins are permitted but will require filling in paperwork on-site
Turnaround time: Same-day results if collected by 2 p.m.

Real Time Laboratories
4100 Fairway Ct. Suite 600 Carrollton, Texas
Hours: Open daily; see website for details
Cost: $125 to $250 depending on turnaround time
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: 6 to 48 hours, depending on the test

DevLab Bio
4100 Fairway Drive, Suite 410, Carrollton, Texas
Hours: Open Monday to Saturday; see website for details
Cost: Covered by insurance, except for travel requests
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Same-day or next-day results

L&H Scientific
2801 Osler Drive, Building B, Suite 123, Grand Prairie, Texas, 75051
Hours: Monday to Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: Prices start at $275 to $425, depending on turnaround time
Appointment required: Strongly encouraged. Same-day results require testing before noon.
Turnaround time: Same-day to one-day

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Denver, Colorado

American Family Care Urgent Care
Various locations throughout Denver
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: Most major insurance covered
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Three to five days

Advanced Urgent Care
Various locations throughout Denver
Hours: Seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Cost: Covered by most major insurance, PCR rapid test at Broomfield clinic is $125
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Same-day for a rapid PCR test, three to seven days for other tests

Premier Diagnostics
Various locations throughout Denver
Hours: See site for details
Cost: Covered by insurance, the cost of the RT-PCR test is $125 if not covered
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Within 48 hours

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Detroit, Michigan

CVS Minute Clinic
1935 Campbell, Detroit, Michigan
Hours: Pharmacy open until 8 p.m.
Cost: No out-of-pocket cost with insurance
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Two to three days

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Houston, Texas

Curative
Various locations throughout Houston
Hours: See website for more information
Cost: No out-of-pocket cost when billed to your health plan or the government
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: One to two days

Any Test Now
Various locations throughout Houston
Hours: See website for details
Cost: $199
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Two to three days

Memorial Village ER
14520 Memorial Dr. Houston, Texas
Hours: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.‬ every day
Cost: $150 or insurance is accepted
Appointment required: No
Turnaround: Two to three days

Rapid COVID Clinic
Various locations throughout Houston
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: $250
Appointment required: Appointments preferred, drive-ins accepted
Turnaround time: 36 to 48 hours

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Las Vegas, Nevada

Pharmatech
546 N Eastern Ave Suite 130, Las Vegas, Nevada
Hours: See website for more information
Cost: $120
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: One to two days

Cuur Diagnostics
3450 S. Maryland Pkwy Las Vegas, Nevada
Hours: Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Cost: $125
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: One to two days

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Los Angeles, California

COVID Clinic
124 locations in 15 states, with new locations and states added weekly. Also available at 13 airports, including LAX, BUR and ONT.
Hours: Generally 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., 7 days a week. Location hours may vary.
Cost: Free 1 to 2 day PCR available for the insured and uninsured (conditions apply). $299 for rapid 1-hour result PCR test.
Appointment required: Yes. Same-day appointments are available.
Turnaround time: One to two days for expedited PCR test

Reliant Urgent Care
Various locations throughout Los Angeles
Hours: See website for more information
Appointment required: Yes
Cost: $195 for 24- to 36-hour turnaround, $175 for 1-hour turnaround (not covered by insurance)
Turnaround time: Depends on the level of service booked

Curative
Various locations throughout Los Angeles
Hours: See website for more information
Cost: No out of pocket cost when billed to your health plan or the government
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: One to two days

OnSite Safe
6411 Sepulveda Blvd., Van Nuys, California
Hours: Monday-Saturday; see website for specifics
Costs: $164
Appointment Required: Yes
Turnaround time: Two days, next-day available with expedited processing for an extra cost

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Miami and Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Lab Doctor
1425-A SE 17th St, Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Hours: Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Cost: $179
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Next-day results

Air Land Sea
Sheltair FLL, 1100 Lee Wagener Boulevard, Suite 346, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33315
Hours: Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Cost: With insurance, $75 for next-day results, $125 for same-day results. Without insurance, $175 for next-day results, $225 for same-day results. 4 to 6 hour expedited results, $450.
Appointment required: No, but appointments can be scheduled at covidFLL.com
Turnaround time: Same-day, next-day and 4 to 6 hours. Tests for same-day results must be administered before 11 a.m.

Miami-Dade County testing sites
Various locations throughout Miami-Dade County
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: Free
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Two to three days

American Scientific Diagnostics
1860 Old Okeechobee Road Suite 508, West Palm Beach, Florida
Hours: Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: $150 for next-day results, $250 for same-day results
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Depends on the test booked

LabDX
1515 NW 167th St Suite 410, Miami Gardens, Florida 33169
Hours: Monday to Friday 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost: $129 for home or office visit, or $89 per test when you drive up to the lab. Mention the discount code LABDX10PTSGUY for an exclusive $10 discount from TPG.
Appointment required: Yes for concierge, walk-ins accepted at ab drive-up location
Turnaround time: Within 24 to 36 hours

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota

CVS
3655 Central Ave NE, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Hours: By appointment
Cost: No out-of-pocket cost with insurance
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Two to three days

Where to get a COVID-19 test in New York City, New York and Newark, New Jersey

There are hundreds of testing sites across New York City, and you can also find pop-up mobile testing sites at different locations throughout the five boroughs. Not all of these will return COVID-19 test results in a timely enough manner for travel, however. Even the cited turnaround time may no longer be accurate.

Carecube
Various locations in Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: Accepts insurance or costs between $175 and $400
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Results in four to six hours

CityMD
Various locations across New York City and the boroughs
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: CityMD is not collecting copayments for COVID-19 related visits
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Five to seven days

OnSite Safe
Location in Chelsea with home or office visits for groups of five people or more
Hours: Monday to Saturday; see website for specifics
Costs: $184
Appointment Required: No
Turnaround time: Two days, next-day available with expedited processing for an extra cost

In-home COVID-19 testing programs include:
Zeel
Offers COVID-19 swab PCR testing in homes and offices, administered by LPNs and RNs, to the New York metro area. Available in New York City, Westchester County, Nassau County, North Jersey and Lower Fairfield County, Connecticut.
Cost: $249 for the first person tested in-home plus $50 per additional person.
Turnaround time: Results within 24 hours.

There are several free COVID-19 testing options available for Newark residents, with no appointment or insurance needed. Get more information here.

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Orlando, Florida

COVID Testing LLC
Various locations throughout Orlando
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: With insurance, $35 for next-day results, $75 for same-day results. Without insurance, $115 for next-day results, $155 for same-day results
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Same or the next day. Tests for same-day results must be taken before noon.

Paramount Urgent Care
Various locations throughout Orlando
Hours: 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Cost: Free for self-pay and insured patients, excluding Medicaid
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Three to four days

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

American Family Care (AFC) Urgent Care
1444 W. Passyunk Avenue, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Hours: Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday to Sunday: 8 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: No charge for PCR tests with insurance
Appointment required: Yes, and telemedicine visit
Turnaround time: One to three days

RapiCare
620 East Welsh Road, Horsham, Pennsylvania
Hours: Open even days a week, 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: $165 for RT-PCR
Appointment required? Yes
Turnaround time: 24 hours for RT-PCR

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Curative
Various locations throughout Pittsburgh
Hours: See website for more information
Cost: No out-of-pocket cost when billed to your health plan or the government
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: One to two days

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Portland, Oregon

Zoom+Care
Various locations throughout
Hours: Depends on location
Cost: Covered by insurance or lab fee of $100, as well as the cost of a virtual visit
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Three to five days

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Sacramento, California

Anyone 18 years of age or older living in Sacramento County can ​get tested for COVID-19 for free after completing an online screening. COVID-19 testing will then be scheduled.

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Salt Lake City, Utah

Intermountain Health
Various locations throughout Salt Lake City
Hours: See site for individual location information
Cost: May vary if testing for travel versus symptoms or exposure
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: 90% of tests returned within 48 hours

Premier Diagnostics
Various locations throughout Salt Lake City
Hours: See site for details
Cost: Covered by insurance or $125 for RT-PCR test
Appointment required: No
Turnaround time: Within 48 hours

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Seattle/Tacoma, Washington

Discovery Health MD
Two locations: DoubleTree Suites Southcenter and Seattle Airport
Hours: See site for details
Cost: $176 for next-day RT-PCR test, $349 for one-hour RT-PCR test
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Same or next day, depending on what you booked

Seattle testing locations
Various locations throughout Seattle
Hours: Varies by location
Cost: Free
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Two to three days

Where to get a COVID-19 test in St. Louis, Missouri

ARCpoint Labs
11255 Olive Blvd, Creve Coeur, Missouri
Hours: Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: $250 for same-day results
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Same day or 48 to 60 hours, depending on what you booked

Where to get a COVID-19 test in Washington, D.C./Baltimore/Arlington

Farragut Medical & Travel Care
815 Connecticut Ave NW Washington, D.C.
Hours: Monday to Friday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: $300
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Two days for expedited testing, or two to five days

Preston’s Pharmacy
Various locations in Arlington and Fairfax
Hours: Monday to Saturday, check the website for details
Cost: $45 for three- to five-day PCR testing, expedited processing available for an additional cost
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: Three to five days, faster for expedited processing

McLean Pharmacy
1392 Chain Bridge Road, Mclean, Virginia
Hours: Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m to 5 p.m.
Cost: $200 for a 48-hour turnaround and $250 for a 24-hour turnaround
Appointment required: Yes
Turnaround time: See above

Bottom line

While it has generally been getting easier to obtain a COVID-19 PCR test for travel purposes in some locations, turnaround times can still vary.

That means if you need COVID-19 PCR test results in advance of a tight travel deadline, the safest bet is to use a provider that can guarantee same-day or next-day service. Some providers that initially guaranteed results in 24 or 48 hours have increased their turnaround times, in some cases up to seven days. However, these rapid PCR test options will cost extra and aren’t yet available across the country.

A few providers have also indicated that several insurance companies won’t cover COVID-19 testing for travel purposes, so keep in mind that you may have to pay out of pocket.

Some destinations will allow you to quarantine upon arrival until your test results arrive. Finally, if you do test positive (presumably asymptomatically), you will need to be prepared to quarantine in place wherever you are for at least two weeks.

Featured photo by Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

The Points Guy

Masks recommended, not mandated again in North Carolina

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper didn’t announce a new statewide mask mandate during a Thursday briefing, but he and state health leaders urged citizens to get a COVID-19 vaccine following the CDC’s new guidance that recommends even fully vaccinated people wear coverings indoors due to a rise in COVID-19. At the beginning of the briefing, Cooper had a grim message for people who were unvaccinated: “Get a vaccine today.” Chloe Leshner digs into Thursday’s announcement from the governor: https://www.wcnc.com/article/news/hea…

COVID-19 Vaccine Demand Increases at Area Clinic & Pharmacies

ROCK HILL, S.C. (CN2 TODAY) With COVID-19 cases increasing each day in South Carolina and the new delta variant, the Rock Hill Piedmont Community Vaccination Clinic and Carolina Pharmacy are both seeing an increased demand of people wanting a COVID-19 vaccine.

Twelve year-old Shalaya Orr of Rock Hill got her first COVID-19 vaccine at the Rock Hill Piedmont Community Vaccination Clinic on this Friday.

“For my friends, basketball, sports, classmates, to keep them safe”, says Orr.

Orr is not alone. Deputy City Manager, Jimmy Bagley says the clinic that was once opened nearly every week day, went down to just Fridays because the demand was so low. He says now more and more are signing up to get a shot.

“These are people that are either hesitant all along, now they are reading more about it, the delta variant is really taking its toll on people as all viruses they mutate and you see these changes. they tend to get worse as time goes on”, says Bagley.

Carolina Pharmacy locations seeing the same thing. It was just in May when we reported they were having to throw vaccines away, now they are in hot demand as well as people needing a COVID -19 test.

“We’ve actually seen up to a 300 percent increase in vaccinations. Just with the spark of the delta variant, more people are getting vaccination. As well as heading back to school”, says Dr. Olivia Hill./

Pharmacist with Carolina Pharmacy, Dr. Olivia Hill says they are also seeing around a 75 percent increase of people wanting to be tested for COVID-19.

Carolina Pharmacy says you can make an appointment online for a vaccine or COVID-19 test. It carries Moderna, Pfizer and Janssen vaccines. www.carolinapharmacy.com 

The Rock Hill Piedmont Community Vaccination Clinic announced its last day will be Friday, August 27th. Jimmy Bagley says to make an appointment as soon as you can to get both vaccines in before the clinic closes. https://www.cityofrockhill.com/home/showpublisheddocument?id=28404

CN2 News

Charlotte pharmacies seeing increase in COVID-19 testing, vaccines

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) – Demand for COVID-19 tests and vaccines is on the rise for some local pharmacies.

Carolina Pharmacy has multiple locations in Charlotte, Rock Hill, and Lancaster. Staff members say they have seen an increase in COVID-19 tests and vaccines in the last week.

“The vaccine is becoming more popular again as well as testing, people want to make sure that they’re able to stay safe,” said Doctor Alex Yawny at the Walker’s Cotswold Pharmacy location.

The Walker’s Cotswold Pharmacy offers COVID-19 tests and all three COVID-19 vaccines daily. Staff members say most people are coming in for two reasons.

“Large increase in travel since restrictions have started to be lifted as well as this new Delta Variant causing a slight increase in transmission. People are starting to see more cases rising,” Yawny said.

As of July 30, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services is reporting 50-percent of the population is partially vaccinated and 47-percent of the population is fully vaccinated.

The CEO of StarMed Healthcare says testing and vaccines doubled this week at their Charlotte locations and most of the people getting tested had symptoms.

Ashley Matson and her family got tested at the Central Avenue location Saturday. She says they wanted to make sure they were healthy before boarding their flight to Italy.

“It’s extremely important to us. We’ve always abided by the restrictions. We fully supported the lockdowns, and masks and as soon as we could get vaccinated we were, so whatever we can do to help the community stay safe that’s what we want to do,” Matson said.

While restrictions have eased, pharmacists are reminding people now is not the time to let your guard down.

“Continue practicing social distancing, masking up whenever it’s possible, whenever you feel comfortable doing so, and getting your vaccine if you feel comfortable and ready for it,” Yawny said.

Copyright 2021 WBTV. All rights reserved.

Published: Aug. 1, 2021 at 10:31 AM EDT

 

Carolina Pharmacy Offering Pfizer Vaccine for 12 & Up

keep children safe this summer amid covid-19

ROCK HILL, S.C. (CN2 NEWS) – After the CDC says those 12 and up can get the Pfizer vaccine, an area pharmacy wanted to get its hands on the shots.

Carolina Pharmacy wants the community to know it now has the Pfizer vaccine for those 12 and older available. That’s in addition to the Moderna Vaccine and the Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

Dr. Libby Hartjes with Carolina Pharmacy says she’s had parents voice their concerns about their children’s safety when it comes to the virus.

She says national health experts say children do have a good response to creating high amounts of antibodies of the virus.

Dr. Hartjes adds they have tons of vaccines available and same day appointments at their locations in Lancaster and Rock Hill as well as their charlotte locations.

There is a parental consent for minors. You can sign up online at www.carolinapharmacy.com. 

Read the article at CN2 News.

[WCNC] ‘It’s just trickling in compared to before’ | Demand for vaccines low as restrictions are rolled back

Vaccinations

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Across North Carolina, 7.8 million vaccines have been given, and top health officials want to keep the momentum going, especially after relaxing some COVID-19 restrictions.

As of Friday, people who are fully vaccinated do not have to wear masks inside or outside most places. Gov. Roy Cooper also got rid of capacity requirements and social distancing guidelines.

Health experts say COVID-19 is not gone; metrics show people are still getting sick. Data shows vaccines are working and as long as people are not vaccinated, they’re still at risk.

Carolina Pharmacy manager Kavel Bhathela is drawing up less vaccine than he had been even just a few weeks ago.

“We’re still seeing folks come in, it’s just trickling in compared to before,” he said.

By now, every adult who really wanted a shot has gotten one. Even though the Governor rolled back many restrictions, there’s still a need to get more shots in arms.

“Obviously the hope is to have as many people vaccinated whether you’re 12 to 16 or 16 to 100,” Dr. Lewis McCurdy with Atrium Health said. “We’d like to continue to encourage people to get immunized.”

The sooner more people get shots, the better. As COVID-19 lingers, it will continue to be a threat.

“The more people who get vaccinated, the less chance we have for variants to develop in our communities,” Dr. David Priest with Novant Health said.

But as of last week, 12- to 15-year-olds are able to get the Pfizer vaccine. The age group is a new opportunity. There’s demand and excitement about the shots again.

“I’m very excited,” 14-year-old Jocelyn Gaines told WCNC Charlotte after she got her COVID-19 vaccine at Novant Health’s clinic in East Charlotte. It’s not something many kids say about needles.

But Gaines knows the benefits of getting vaccinated.

“I got my shot because I want to see my friends again,” she said.

A lot of kids her age feel the same way and many rushed out to roll up their sleeves.

“It will just make me feel safer and it seems like a step forward from what we have been through in the past year,” 12-year-old Joey Rising said.

It’s excitement vaccine providers haven’t seen in recent weeks.

Carolina Pharmacy just got its shipments of Pfizer and they’re ready to vaccinate this new age group.

“The 12 and up age group is super important because kids are going to be going back to school in the fall and camp over the summer,” Bhathela said.

And there’s some hope demand could spike again as a result.

“I think it does open up the opportunity to certainly increase a new group of people who can get vaccinated which will help with herd immunity and perhaps it will encourage their older siblings and their parents or grandparents to also come with them to get vaccinated if they haven’t,” McCurdy said.

Lower demand for shots raises another issue too. More doses going to waste than before.

“There are times where we have to toss vaccine and that just is due to the fact that it only lasts several hours after you puncture the vial,” Bhathela said. “We typically will try to ask folks who come in the store have they been vaccinated yet we have extra doses if they want to get it today and that typically works.”

He’s hopeful the interest from teens will help keep doses from going to waste.

There are plenty of opportunities to get vaccinated. Anyone who gets a first or second dose through StarMed Healthcare this week will be entered into a raffle for an Xbox.

Link to WCNC article

Contact Chloe Leshner at cleshner@wcnc.com and follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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