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CHKD emergency rooms, urgent care facilities not the right place for COVID-19 tests, families advised to seek alternative care

CHKD officials said to speak with your pediatrician or find an alternative site if your child needs a COVID-19 test.

NORFOLK, Va. — As COVID-19 cases continue to surge across Hampton Roads, health care facilities are now running low on space to treat patients.

The Children's Hospital of The King's Daughters said its urgent care centers and emergency rooms were extremely busy, and weren't the right place to bring a child who has mild COVID-19 symptoms. 

That means families with children who need a COVID-19 test should visit the CHKD. They were told to speak with their pediatricians or to find alternative testing sites.

CHKD officials said kids who have not been exposed to the virus or aren't showing any symptoms do not need to be tested.

The Virginia Department of Health closed all of its community vaccination centers in the area due to a winter storm, but Military Circle Mall is expected to remain open for COVID-19 testing. 

An update provided by the VDH later in the day announced that all vaccination centers will remain closed on Tuesday, January 4, in light of the weather. 

Author's note: On Jan. 3, an announcement on the CHKD Facebook page said its emergency department and urgent care centers were at full capacity. A spokesperson clarified Tuesday that those facilities were "extremely busy," but not full. On Jan. 4, they were still accepting new patients.