Submitted by the Whatcom County Health Department
The COVID-19 testing site operated by the Whatcom County Health Department and Whatcom Unified Command at Northwest Washington Fairgrounds in Lynden, Washington, will end operations next week. The last day COVID-19 testing will be available at this site will be on Wednesday, April 28 between 9 a.m. – noon and 1-4 p.m.
The Northwest Washington COVID-19 testing site is closing due to reduced use of the site. Since the third wave of cases peaked in January 2021, the number of tests performed each week at the Lynden site has decreased by more than 87%. From April 13-19, only 16.7% of all tests performed at the two sites run by WCHD/WUC were conducted at the Lynden location.
Staffing resources currently deployed to the Lynden testing site will be redirected towards vaccination efforts, though the Whatcom County Health Department will continue to evaluate testing needs in the community and will adjust testing operations accordingly.
Low-barrier COVID-19 testing, which is provided by a standing order issued by Whatcom County’s health officer, is still available at the Bellingham International Airport location. This site operates every day of the week from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and has capacity to administer up to 500 tests per day. In recent weeks, between 250-300 tests have been administered at this location daily.
“The Bellingham site can absorb the volume of testing that has been happening at the Lynden site,” said Cindy Hollinsworth, communicable disease and epidemiology manager for WCHD. “As we’ve done throughout this pandemic response, we are adjusting to the current public health needs. Consolidating our testing operations at the Bellingham testing site allows us to focus more energy on vaccinations.”
COVID-19 testing is also available at numerous healthcare providers throughout Whatcom County. A list of COVID-19 testing options is available at www.whatcomcounty.us/covidtesting.