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Gerald R. Ford International Airport offering rapid PCR COVID-19, antibody tests

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Posted at 3:39 PM, Mar 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-17 15:39:10-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Gerald Ford International Airport is one of the first in the nation to offer rapid molecular PCR tests.

It started offering the tests Wednesday by expanding its partnership with TACKL Health, a news release said.

The drive-up, no-appointment-needed site has added a rapid PCR option that provides results in 30 minutes, down from its past offering of 24 to 72 hours.

PCR tests are thought to be more accurate than rapid antigen tests and are now required by many countries before international travel.

The testing site is open daily from 4 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Those wanting to be tested do not need to have COVID-19 symptoms or a doctor’s referral.

“As travel demand continues to grow, some destinations, especially international, increasingly require a PCR test before entering,” said Stephen Clark, director of commercial development for the Gerald R. Ford International Airport Authority. “Results for these tests have historically taken 24-48 hours, so the 30-minute turnaround is a huge benefit to our guests.”

TACKL Health has administered more than 4,500 tests since opening the testing site in December.

The rapid PCR tests will cost $275 per person.

In addition to its rapid antigen test, TACKL Health is also introducing a new rapid antibody test that checks for antibodies.

This test is administered through a finger prick and should have results available within 20 minutes.

The test will cost $65 as a standalone service or $45 with the purchase of another service.

“The site continues to be open to all in the community, not just those traveling through the Ford Airport,” Clark said. “We have been pleased that this offering has allowed so many families to gather safely for the holidays and other important events.”

Testing is set up in the airport’s economy lot and is available on a first-come, first-served basis.