The Houston area has quickly emerged as a hotspot for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Routine testing sites are becoming quickly overwhelmed with long lines of anxious people eager to know if they have the disease. The establishment of non-routine testing sites, like the one Community Health First ER (CH1ER), gives individuals experiencing corona virus symptoms another option of where to be tested with results in one to two days or less.
If you start exhibiting symptoms of the Covid-19 virus, you understandably want to know soon if you are infected so you can seek the proper medical attention as well as keep your loved ones safe. We strive to make this process as effective and efficient as possible and are available for people presenting with symptoms 24/7.
What is Rapid PCR Testing?
Using a special nasal swab, a clinician is able to collect a sample of fluid or mucus from your throat or nose. We then can test your sample utilizing the BioFire® Respiratory 2.1 (RP2.1) Panel to obtain results quickly in comparison to other testing methods.
What is the Purpose and Effectiveness of PCR Tests?
It is important to point out that the PCR tests are used to determine if someone is infected early on, and as such, they do not test for the presence of antibodies (immunity) to COVID-19. No testing is 100% completely accurate all the time; however, PCR tests are useful for confirming the presence of an infection in a patient, so they can be mindful of not exposing others to the virus.
“Our PCR testing provides a good indication of who is infected,” said Dr. Miryala, medical director of Community Health First Emergency Care. “Individuals who test positive can be isolated and inform persons they’ve been in contact with, so they can self-isolate as well. These two components – testing and contract tracing, are essential in getting this virus under control.“
Could It Be Something Else?
Common ailments mirror the symptoms of COVID-19, and in mild or moderate forms of the virus, it may be difficult to distinguish between it and a common cold, for example. Our utilization of the BioFire® Respiratory 2.1 (RP2.1) Panel not only detects the coronavirus but can also determine if a person’s symptoms are being caused by another respiratory issue in as little as 45 minutes.
How Do You Prevent the Spread of Corona Virus?
As a community, we are all responsible for mitigating the spread of coronavirus. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides a list of simple steps you can take to help the transmission of the disease:
- Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly for at least 20 seconds. Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water aren’t available.
- Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects people frequently touch.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others.
- CDC recommends that people wear cloth face coverings in public settings and when around people outside of their household, especially when other social distancing measures are challenging to maintain.
You may have also heard the recommendation about social or physical distancing. You may consider:
- Working from home instead of at an office
- Visiting loved ones by electronic devices instead of in-person
- Postponing gatherings for the immediate future
Do I need to Schedule a Rapid Test?
No. Community Health First ER is an emergency room committed to providing the highest quality of care for those experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, we can evaluate, diagnose, and treat you immediately.
Symptoms of the coronavirus include:
- Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
- Chills or shaking with chills
- Muscle pain
- Sore throat
- New loss or sense of smell or taste
- Abdominal Pain
If you are experiencing symptoms, simply call us at (346) 954-6007 and get screened. We are open 24/7. All patients will receive a prompt evaluation by our clinical team and our physician will decide which tests and treatments are appropriate. You will be treated in a comfortable, concierge, and friendly atmosphere.
In the unfortunate event that you do have to visit our facility, we want to assure you that we have taken extra safety measures at our facility to appropriately screen and protect our patients and community.
Anyone with the following symptoms: fever, cough, and shortness of breath are kindly asked to remain by the entrance doors to be given a mask before entering.
Also, we have a separate waiting area at our front lobby. Our medical team can provide one-on-one care for your needs, day, or night. Moreover, if any patient has any concerns, doubts, or questions regarding their symptoms, they are encouraged to call our facility and speak to one of our medical staff.
About Community Health First ER
Emergency health care, especially in the time of a pandemic, is a critical resource. Our commitment is to provide a personal, transparent, and concierge-driven emergency health care experience to members of our community. Locally owned and operated by health care providers and partners we trust, we strive to support and create meaningful relationships with those around us. We exist to put your health and wellness first.
For more information call 24/7, visit or engage with us on social media
Community Health First Emergency Room
1101 East Blvd at Hwy 225
Deer Park, Texas 77536, USA