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People turned away as some Houston COVID testing sites unable to take walk-ins

More than a dozen people were told walk-ins wouldn’t be tested for COVID Monday at the Maplewood Shopping Center Curative Inc. testing site.

HOUSTON — Some COVID-19 testing sites already seeing a big boom of people wanting to get tested after Christmas.

More than a dozen people were told walk-ins wouldn’t be tested for COVID Monday at the Maplewood Shopping Center Curative Inc. testing site in southwest Houston.

Workers said they reached capacity, and only appointments were being taken.

Since then, their website has been updated to say, due to holiday volumes, walk-ins may not be accepted.

RELATED: Where to get a free COVID-19 test in the Houston area

One father, who booked an appointment online, believed he and his family had been doing everything right to stay clear of COVID, when they took COVID tests right before Christmas Eve.

“We expected all the rapid tests to come back negative, but they were wrong,” Chris Hokanson said. “My oldest son's rapid test came back positive.”

Hokanson came with his sons to get PCR tests Monday to be sure the rest of them don’t have COVID too.

“With omicron being in the news, a lot of people have friends and family testing positive,” he said. “When you hear so many in your circle testing positive, then you’re more likely to say, 'it’s in my community,' not just on the news in another state, but it’s nearby. It’s top of the mind for everybody now.”

Along with this family, other people booked appointments. Kenneth Borski was one of the first in line Monday morning to get swabbed for COVID.

“We were spending time with family and friends, and I wanted to make sure we’re okay,” he said.

He said he wanted to find out sooner rather than later if COVID would be a problem for his loved ones and himself.

“If you don’t know, we could be spreading it around a lot further,” he said. “We’re trying to be the proactive type and get it done.”

Some other testing locations, like the Houston Health Department Southwest Multi Service Center was closed Monday, but is scheduled to re-open Tuesday at 10 a.m.

Ugochi Iloka on social media: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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