GLOOMY weather and long lines have not deterred residents from turning up in droves for a COVID-19 test in towns across the region.
The amount of swabs taken in Moree last week add up to more than a quarter of the town's entire population, whileTamworth numbers have increased by hundreds.
The spike in testing comes after a COVID-positive couple went on a roadtrip through regional NSW while potentially infectious, and stopped over in Moree for three days in early June.
Data has revealed 1775 people were tested at Moree clinics in the week ending on Sunday, according to information from Hunter New England Health (HNEH).
That number is an incredible increase from just 134 tests in Moree across the entire two weeks beforehand.
Moree's official population is only about 7300, so the numbers show more than a quarter of the town's residents have now been tested.
Tamworth also saw a dramatic increase in COVID-19 testing rates last week, with almost 900 locals seeking a swab in the seven days to Sunday.
That's up from 720 last week, and is more than double some of the weekly testing totals the city was recording earlier this year.
A new drive-through test site opened in Moree in response to Wednesday night's announcement that a Melbourne couple had stayed, shopped and eaten out in town while potentially infectious with the virus.
The drive-through testing queue in Moree was reportedly more than six hours long on Thursday and in Tamworth, the line was more than two hours long.
No locally-acquired cases of coronavirus have been recorded across the state in the latest testing period, but the Melbourne couple who roadtripped north did create a scare in regional NSW.
The hospitality workers and retail staff from Moree, who are considered close contacts of the couple, have all returned negative results but several remain in isolation.
Where to get a test in Tamworth:
Laverty Pathology drive-through
- Drive through with no bookings required
- 7:45am to 3pm between Monday and Friday
- 7:45am to 12pm on Saturday
- Plain Street carpark, Tamworth
Tamworth Respiratory Clinic
- Booking required by calling 6768 3288
- 8:30am to 11:30am between Monday and Friday
- Operates at 255 Goonoo Goonoo Road, Tamworth
Tamworth Douglas Hanley Moir
- Booking required by calling 1800 026 622 or 9111 3405
- 8:30am to 4pm between Monday and Friday
- 8:30am to 10:30am on Saturday
- 199 Peel Street, Tamworth
Where to get a test in Moree:
Moree Gateway drive-through
- Drive-through with no bookings required
- 9am to 3pm until June 15
- 3 Blueberry Road, Moree
- Walk-in with no booking required
- 8:15am to 6pm daily
- Alice Street, Moree
Moree Respiratory Clinic
- Bookings equired online
- 9am to 5pm between Monday and Friday
- 140 Anne Street, Moree
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