More unusual COVID-19 testing locations pop up in Snohomish County

Police in the North Sound are warning people to avoid taking advantage of free COVID-19 tests being offered at pop-up sites that are not connected to local health agencies.

Edmonds Police say they worked with state health officials to determine two sites in their area were ‘unusual.’ The testing sites were gone by Wednesday, yet some people were able to receive a test.

"I’m curious, I’ve never seen that before," said Jack Mac, who considered asking for a test but declined.

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On Tuesday, a Q13 News crews snapped images of one of the sites offering tests in downtown Edmonds. It showed a man wearing scrubs and a mask.

But local health officials warned the public last week from seeking testing from similar facilities, citing concerns about testing accuracy and more. By Wednesday, Edmonds Police tweeted a warning to the public to avoid seeking testing and said it would continue investigating.

Francine Cohen told Q13 News she agreed to be tested on Tuesday but grew upset after learning officials had warned against it.

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"I choose to be a participant in supporting the research on behalf of my community," she said, but changed her mind about civic duty when she learned law enforcement urged the public to doing the same thing. "Hell, do not pull that rug out from under me. I don’t like that."

Edmonds wasn’t the first location across Puget Sound where health officials spotted similar scenarios. Health officials in King County said they noticed last week other pop-up testing sites in multiple neighborhoods. In Auburn, officials warned citizens to not accept similar offers by strangers, or agree to take one inside their home.

To receive a test, clients would fill out paperwork, but local health officials warned their officers had witnessed medical records left out in the open and questioned whether the tests would be returned with accuracy.

Security experts added their concern private medical data left unsecured could leave victims open to fraud.

For anyone seeking a test, health officials encourage the public to do so from a county source or trusted medical professionals.

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