Baystate Health Emergency Room will not offer COVID-19 testing

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Baystate Health is urging residents not to go to hospital emergency rooms for a COVID-19 test.

“Over the past two weeks, Baystate Health emergency departments have seen a dramatic increase in visits from people presenting for COVID tests which could be performed at community sites specified by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health,” said said Dr Andrew Artenstein, Chief Executive Physician and Director of Studies, Baystate Health.

They are asking people to find a testing location elsewhere in Massachusetts, which you can find on the website here. Baystate Health recently saw an increase in the number of people entering the emergency room for a COVID-19 test due to the lack of appointment slots for PCR tests in the region. Dr Artenstein says that when you go to the emergency room for a non-urgent problem, it takes resources away from those in urgent need.

“Going to the emergency room for non-urgent COVID-19 testing without serious symptoms requiring immediate attention, such as shortness of breath or chest pain that could be symptomatic of COVID-19 or other serious illness, diverts essential resources and life support for patients in a real emergency, ”said Dr Artenstein.