Local mental health agency provides more COVID-19 test

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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - The Silver State is facing more than 1,500 cases of COVID-19, supplies are becoming scarce, and the demand for test kits is on the rise.

Genevieve Ramos, Serenity Mental Health director says they have a solution to provide some relief to hundreds in Northern Nevada.

"We have a shortage, and our private lab is able to supply us with devices and the test kits that have been a struggle for our government to get,” said Ramos.

The mental health agency has been in Carson City for 7 years. Ramos said the agency quickly identified a need in our community and ordered 400 tests through their CDC approved private lab.

"Regardless of how many positives we get, I think it will definitely give us a better idea of what we are looking at and it is really difficult to diagnose a community, with how great this problem is if we can't test people,” explained Ramos.

The test will be conducted in a drive-thru setting where medical professionals will perform them to patients who have a confirmed appointment. Ramos said many who begin facing symptoms are asking for tests, but with such a low supply, some are being turned away for others who may be more at risk.

"Although we do also have criteria that we are following, we are able to be a little bit less stringent since we do have the availability of so many," Ramos stated.

Ramos said the fear of limited resources, on top of increased isolation, affects the mental stability of many in our area. She claimed there has been a major increase of Nevadan’s battling stress and anxiety due to COVID-19, But getting tested can possibly take a weight off their shoulders.

"Not only having the availability of clinicians who are working from home safely who are doing telehealth with any patient who is in need, being able to provide a service like this and adding an additional piece of mind is a wonderful thing." Said Ramos.

As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to increase, Serenity Mental Health is standing strong with our community to ensure we stay safe.

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