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COVID-19 testing hours reduced

Published:  29 June 2022

It has been the heart of COVID-19 testing since March 2020 but in June, operational hours at the 1300 Smiles COVID-19 testing site were reduced.

New hours for PCR and RAT collection at the 1300 Smiles testing site will be as follows:

  • Monday to Friday from 8am - 4pm
  • Saturday and Sunday from 10am - 3pm

 Executive COVID-19 lead Judy Morton said the community was now through the worst of the current COVID-19 wave.

‘‘We’re continuing to see a gradual reduction in demand for testing since moving past the Omicron ‘peak’ earlier this year and this, coupled with the prevalence and availability of RAT kits, has helped reduced demand and wait times at the 1300 Smiles testing site,’’ Ms Morton said. 

“We will always respond to demand though so, if we see a surge in demand for testing or face another COVID-19 wave, we will respond and be here for our community.’’

Ms Morton said for many staff, the reduction in testing hours would allow staff to return to their usual duties.

‘‘So many of our staff have gone above and beyond to support the health service’s response to COVID-19,’’ Ms Morton said.

‘‘Now is the right time to return people to their usual duties so our health service can get back to business as usual and for us, this means delivering the highest quality healthcare to all North Queenslanders.’’

 Health Service chief executive Kieran Keyes said he was immensely proud of the health service’s COVID-19 response to date.

 ‘‘Our testing teams have endured tough conditions and worked under incredible demand,’’ Mr Keyes said.

 ‘‘I think I can confidently speak for the community when I say from all of us, thank you.

“I’d also like to thank the community for its patience as we managed the huge level of demand.

 ‘‘The response to COVID-19 has been a real team effort and I encourage everyone to continue doing their part to keep the community safe.

 ‘‘Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms should continue to perform a rapid antigen test at home or come forward for testing.’’

 For more information on COVID-19 visit the Queensland Health website.


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