Citizen vaccinations begin in Moore County

On December 21, local first responder Hunter Case became the first person in Moore County to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. (Photo Provided)

LOCAL NEWS — On December 21, Metro Assistant EMA Director and Critical Care Paramedic Hunter Case became the first person in Moore County to receive the COVID-19 vaccination. Since then, local health department officials have been busy behind the scenes giving the vaccine to high exposure health care workers, residents and staff of Lynchburg Nursing Center, first responders, dental and medical office staff, funeral and mortuary workers, and other state identified tier 1 individuals.

On Saturday, January 2 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., the Moore County Health Department will be open and offering COVID-19 vaccinations to anyone 75 years of age and older. Vaccinations are free and offered on a first-come, first-served basis. You do not need an appointment.

Mayor Bonnie Lewis says that COVID testing and COVID vaccinations will not take place on the same days. Citizens may go to any state health department to receive the vaccine including the Lincoln County Health Department at 1000 West Washington Street and the Tullahoma Health Department located at 615 Wilson Avenue.

“Right now, only state health departments have the vaccine for citizens but you can go to any health department you choose,” says Mayor Lewis.

State health departments will be closed on Thursday for New Years Eve and Friday for New Years Day. If you have questions, you may contact the Moore County Health Department at 931-759-4251.•

{The Lynchburg Times is the only independently owned and operated newspaper in Lynchburg, Tennessee. We cover Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

Local health department prepping for vaccine arrival; move to COVID self tests three days a week

Per the state, local health departments, including Moore County, will go to self COVID testing three days a week to allow staff time to transition to vaccination prep. Health Department officials stress that free, local testing will still be available five days a week. (File Photo)

LOCAL NEWS — According to the State Department of Health, the Moore County Health Department will now offer COVID-19 self-testing kits to adults three days a week beginning December 21. The self tests are being added as an option to allow local staff to transition to vaccination of frontline health care providers and first responders. 

The new COVID-19 self-tests will be offered to adults on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays beginning Dec. 21. On these days, public health staff members at each TDH COVID-19 testing site will provide self-testing kits to adults who wish to be tested. Individuals will remain in their vehicles while completing paperwork and collecting their samples. Health departments will submit the samples for testing.

“We’re making this transition so our Department of Health staff can assist with administration of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines,” said Tennessee Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey, MD, MBA, FAAP. “State-run health departments currently collect an average of only 16 percent of all COVID-19 tests statewide, and our change will not affect the wide availability of testing through private providers in Tennessee. While the arrival of vaccines is welcome, it is imperative that we not let up on basic best practices and continue to protect each other by wearing masks, practicing social distancing and staying home when sick.”  

Adults tested with the new self-tests will register and receive their results online. The self-tests are not approved for use in children under age 18. Children and adults unable to register online can still receive the standard nasal swab COVID-19 tests on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Test results may be available within 72 hours of arrival at the lab, depending on the volume of tests the testing lab receives. Information will be provided to participants at testing locations on what they can expect after being tested. 

The Moore County Health Department will be closed and will not offer COVID-19 testing on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day and well as New Year’s Eve and New Years Day.

The Moore County Health Department is located at 251 Majors Boulevard and free, drive thru testing will still be available Tuesday through Thursday from 8-11 a.m. at no charge for anyone who wishes to be tested. For more information, call 931-759-4251. •

{The Lynchburg Times is the only independently owned and operated newspaper in Lynchburg, Tennessee. We cover Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}

Health Department changes COVID-19 testing hours

The Moore County Health Department recently reduced its COVID-19 testing hours to 8-10 a.m. Monday through Friday. {Lynchburg Times Photo}

MOORE COUNTY — The state reports that demand for COVID-19 testing is waning despite this week’s increase in cases. So far in the first week of June, there have been 1,816 new cases and Tuesday, the state saw its biggest one day increase with 821 cases.

Moore County’s total of confirmed COVID-19 cases also jumped from three to five just this week.

However, following the state’s lead, the Metro Moore County Health Department (MCHD) recently adjusted their hours for free, public COVID-19 testing to 8-10 a.m. Monday through Friday. Previously the MCHD tested from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Tests are free to all Moore County residents whether they are actively showing symptoms or not. Test results are usually available within 72 hours, depending on the volume of tests the state labs receives that day.

The MCHD is located at 251 Majors Boulevard across from the Lynchburg Dollar General Store. To make an appointment or confirm testing availability call them at 931-759-4251. For general information, Moore County residents may also dial the South Central Regional Hotline between the hours of 8 a.m. at 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at 931-490-8312. The state also mans public information lines at 877-857-2945 or 833-556-2476 from 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. on Monday – Friday and 10 a.m.- 4 p.m., on Saturday and Sunday. •

{The Lynchburg Times is the only independently owned and operated newspaper in Lynchburg. We cover Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}