Demand for COVID-19 tests nearly doubles ahead of Christmas holiday, Wake County officials say

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- COVID-19 testing sites are seeing a surge as the Christmas holiday approaches.

Wake County officials said the demand for a test has doubled.

"I was shocked when I saw the line," said Wake Forest resident Amanda Cottrill.

It took Cottrill two tries to get a test in Wake Forest. She was able to get one Tuesday after giving up Monday.

"I think I was in line for close to an hour and it didn't move from where I tried to enter the line," Cottrill said.

ABC11 also found a wait in Durham at El Centro's free testing site.

Wake, which saw more than 10,000 people get tested on Monday, is expecting another rise after the holiday.

"People that are coming back from travel, and probably are getting back home or want to go back to work will require some testing. So we're going to see a high demand in testing throughout the year," said Wake County COVID-19 Operations Manager Eugene Chalwe.

There are options if you're still trying to squeeze in a test before the holiday.

Wake County has several free drive-thru testing sites where no appointment is required.

  • Sanderford Road Park


2623 Sanderford Road, Raleigh

  • Carolina Pines Park


2305 Lake Wheeler Rd, Raleigh

  • Brentwood Park


3315 Vinson Place, Raleigh

On Tuesday and Wednesday this week, the testing will start at 8:30 a.m. and run to 4:30 p.m.

On Thursday, Christmas Eve Day, the three parks will have testing from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Durham County is offering free testing 7 days a week through the end of December, regardless of insurance or documentation. Some places do require an appointment.

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