Mid-South doctor encourages COVID-19 testing even though vaccines are widely available

COVID-19 testing remains critical, even after vaccination

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Health leaders say COVID-19 testing remains an important tool to fight the pandemic even though vaccines are widely available now.

People lined up for hours during the holidays to take a COVID-19 test.

Three months later, people are lining up for vaccines.

Jim Sweeney, CEO of Poplar Healthcare, the city’s leading private laboratory doing COVID-19 testing, says even with the growing numbers of vaccinated people, testing remains critical.

“So those who’ve not been vaccinated, there’s still a need to monitor them if they become symptomatic and number 2: to do assurance testing, to make sure there aren’t people who are not vaccinated who may be carrying the virus,” said Sweeney.

Sweeny says new variants emerging worldwide are another reason you should get tested if you develop symptoms.

There have been a few cases of people catching coronavirus more than two weeks after a second dose but doctors say being fully vaccinated limits severe illness.

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