When Captain Christina Baurichter joined the National Guard 20 years ago, she never imagined part of her duties would include managing testing sites during a global pandemic.
On Thursday, Baurichter and 28 members of the Wisconsin National Guard set up a Covid-19 testing site at the Omni Center in Onalaska with the La Crosse County Health Department and City of Onalaska.
“It is great to be part of the good will mission and being able to help the community and help the state of Wisconsin open back up,” Baurichter said.
The event was set to handle up to 400 free tests for anyone with symptoms of Covid-19 who were 5-years-old and older.
“Mass testing is one of those things that is going to be really beneficial for our community to identify how many people actually have Covid-19,” Rachel King, public health educator with the La Crosse County Health Department said. “There haven’t been as many tests as we’ve needed to see. We have some great healthcare systems that have been amping up their testing as well, but this was just one extra way that we can get as many tests done as possible.”
King said on average, the county sees 70 tests per day.
Funded on the federal level, results from the nasal swabs were expected within 48 hours. Those with negative tests would receive a call from the Wisconsin National Guard, whereas those who tested positive would be contacted by the health department.