Local public health officials are urging residents not to visit emergency rooms for COVID-19 testing if they are nonsymptomatic or have only mild symptoms.

The Dubuque County Public Health Incident Management Team made an announcement to that effect in conjunction with local health care providers. Health care officials in Grant County, Wis., recently made a similar announcement.

“Emergency department visits should be limited to health emergencies,” states the announcement from the Dubuque County team. “Rapid testing conducted in emergency departments is reserved for symptomatic patients seeking emergency care and for pre-operation testing.”

It states that people looking to get tested “for documentation of being COVID negative for travel, school, work or attending events” should utilize testing options from pharmacies, other health care providers or Test Iowa take-home kits.

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