St. Cloud gets Minnesota's 6th COVID-19 saliva testing site

Four more sites are expected to open in the Twin Cities in the coming weeks.
Author:
Publish date:
A view of the test kit that you spit into at the testing facility. 

A view of the test kit that you spit into at the testing facility. 

Another week and another COVID-19 saliva testing site is opening as Minnesota continues to expand testing in an attempt to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus. 

This week, on Wednesday, a saliva testing facility will open in St. Cloud. It'll be at River's Edge Convention Center, located at 10 Fourth Ave. S., and will be open Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from noon to 7 p.m. and weekends from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

“St. Cloud is a hub for Central Minnesota, offering access to thousands of people who live and work in the area, as well as thousands of college students who live here,” said Dan Huff, assistant commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Health. 

“In recent weeks, we’ve seen a spike in cases in and around St. Cloud, so we hope this increased access to testing will help people learn if they are positive for COVID and to isolate when necessary," Huff added.

Testing is free to everyone regardless if you have insurance. If you do have insurance, you may be asked to present your insurance card, but if you don't you'll be allowed to test anyway. The state is paying for it all. 

St. Cloud is now home to the sixth of 10 planned saliva testing sites to be open in Minnesota. A clinic was open in Mankato last week. Prior to that, there were saliva sites opened in Duluth, Winona, Moorhead and Brooklyn Park. 

Four more saliva testing sites are expected to open in the Twin Cities metro area in the coming week, according to the health department. 

How the test works

When you get to your testing appointment, you will self-administer the test by spitting into a funnel attached to a small tube. Staff on-site will monitor the collection process to make sure there's enough saliva to be tested.

MDH says you shouldn't eat, drink, chew or smoke anything for at least 30 minutes prior to taking the test.

Saliva tests have the same effectiveness as the traditional nasal swab COVID-19 test, but they're more comfortable to take, MDH notes.

The tests will be processed at the state's new saliva lab in Oakdale, with results emailed within 24-48 hours, MDH says. The new lab opened this week, and it will have the capability to process up to 30,000 samples a day when at full capacity.

Walz touted the state's saliva testing program during an interview he did with CNN last week as one of the things people can do to help control the virus, adding that this type of testing strategy is needed on the national level.

More information on the state's COVID-19 community saliva testing program, as well as how to make an appointment at every location, is available here. MDH also has resources to find other testing locations here

Weather with Sven Sundgaard

Next Up

Dayne Sitladeen

Canadian rapper wanted for murder pleads guilty to possessing 67 guns in MN

Dayne Adrian Sitladeen pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court Wednesday.

U.S. district court minnesota - federal court

Charges: Red Lake man with knife sexually assaulted victim

He's also charged with one count of assault with a dangerous weapon.

Jose Berrios

Report: Twins could be 'aggressive sellers' ahead of trade deadline

José Berríos and Nelson Cruz could be in high demand in the coming weeks.

Screen Shot 2021-06-22 at 7.49.39 PM

Why the Timberwolves haven't lost the D'Angelo Russell trade...yet

The Wolves' offseason got more challenging but not impossible.

Pixabay - water surface

2-year-old dies a week after being pulled from Ham Lake pond

The boy had been at Lions Park with family and friends.

Facebook - Dinosaur Drive-Thru image

50 animatronic dinosaurs to take over Mall of America parking lot

Dinosaur Drive-Thru opens June 24 and runs through July 11.

new ulm police department squad car

Police: Man who shot himself during traffic stop has died

He died in a Twin Cities hospital early Wednesday.

Flickr - Voyagerous - Christine Warner

MN's lone National Park is also one of the least popular in the country

Travelers are clearly overlooking what northern Minnesota has to offer.

Elton John

Elton John confirms rescheduled St. Paul dates for farewell tour

"I'm going to go out in the biggest possible way, performing at my very best," John said.

Alex, Curt and Steven Boesl

3 Minnesotans honored with Carnegie Medals for heroic acts

The award is the highest honor for civilian heroism in North America.

police tape, crime scene

Police discover woman dead at Twin Cities home following welfare check

Officers also found "multiple" children on the scene, all of them unhurt.

Related

covid saliva test

Mail order COVID-19 saliva testing now available statewide

MDH has also announced the opening of 11 more COVID-19 testing sites.

covid saliva test

Minnesota opening its 7th saliva testing location in St. Paul

The tests are free and open to anyone regardless of if they have symptoms.

covid-19 testing site sign

Minnesota's 5th saliva testing site opening in Mankato on Friday

The state's free saliva testing program is part of its strategy to help control COVID-19.

coronavirus, covid-19

First COVID-19 saliva testing site in Minnesota opens Wednesday

It's in Duluth, and comes amid a wider effort to make saliva tests more available.