THE number of people in Tamworth who have been tested for coronavirus has almost doubled in a week.
Health data has revealed more than 1200 people living in the city have now been tested for COVID-19, since mid-March.
Despite the massive increase in testing, NSW Health data shows no new cases of coronavirus had been confirmed in the Tamworth local government area in the latest 24-hour testing period.
Health authorities say the key to mapping the coronavirus spread is to test widely and test a lot, and it seems like Tamworth is getting the message.
The drive-through clinic at the Tamworth hospital has been fully booked this week and COVID-19 test numbers for the city have skyrocketed into the thousands.
Hunter New England Health (HNEH) Public health physician Dr David Durrheim told the Leader two mystery cases with an unknown source of infection in the city was also a "main driver" in prompting the need for more widespread testing in town.
"The virus's incubation period can be anything up to 14 days, so ideally you'd want two incubation periods with no virus," Dr Durrheim said.
"That is the magical period - 28 days without any virus, and if we were still searching avidly, that would be extremely reassuring that we have got to that point where circulation is really, really limited.
"The broader we can get the testing done ... the better - any cases that are missed provides the virus with another opportunity of seeding itself in our community."
Armidale is also in the midst of a testing blitz and has a specialty screening clinic operating at the local hospital.
The NSW Health heat map shows close to 600 people residing in the 2350 Armidale postcode have now been tested over the course of the pandemic.
Both facilities are now operating until Friday, May 8.
NSW Health warned information is constantly changing and should be interpreted with caution.
Tamworth is the subject of a testing blitz being run by Hunter New England Health (HNEH) after relatively low testing rates were recorded earlier in the pandemic.
A spokesperson for HNEH said in the four weeks before the specialised drive-through clinic opened at the Tamworth hospital on Monday, almost 600 people had been tested at Tamworth facilities, including the hospital and private centres.
A COVID-19 test at the Tamworth clinic can be arranged by calling 1800 881 568, or a test at the Armidale clinic can be arranged by calling 0427 923 080.
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