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Local flight attendant says the process to get tested for COVID-19 is frustrating

The Federal Government says millions of coronavirus tests are available, but people say the process is drawn out and expensive.

MEMPHIS, Tennessee — Symptomatic people in the Mid-South say they are getting the runaround when they try to get tested for Coronavirus.

The Federal Government says millions of coronavirus tests are available, but people say the process is drawn out and expensive.

Laura Walker, a flight attendant for a major airline, called multiple places.  She went to her primary care physician first.  When she asked to get tested for Coronavirus, her doctor said they didn't do them and referred her to the health department.  She tried a variety of ways to get tested and they just didn't work in her favor.

"It's extremely frustrating because you want to do what's right. Like I want to make sure before I go back to work," Walker said.

Walker has been a flight attendant for a major airline for 10 years and became ill after traveling back to the U.S.  She became ill after traveling back to the U.S. March 4th from England.

"I got back on the 4th and I went to the doctors on the 5th in which they diagnosed me with an upper respiratory infection," Walker explained.

She wanted to make sure she didn't have Coronavirus, but had difficulty getting tested. She decided to call the Tennessee Coronavirus Hotline after getting the run around from her primary care physician and the health department.

 "I called that hotline and I was on hold for an hour and 45 minutes," Walker said.   "They're implying it , it's easy to get and it's not."

The Tennessee Coronavirus hotline sent her to Baptist Hospital, which required Walker to have a full viral screening to make sure it's not another virus first.  Walker said her insurance covered the CV test but not a full viral screening.

"We therefore expect up to a half a million additional tests will be available early next week. We'll be announcing locations probably on Sunday night," said President Trump during a press conference.

Retailers like Walmart, Target, pharmacy giants Walgreens and CVS health are playing a role in the government's plan to make these tests more accessible.  However, Walker says the entire process is a headache.

"The only reason i want to get tested now is because with work they are talking about pay protecting us if we were positive so that would protect me with my pay but honestly at this point i want it to be over," Walker stressed.

Walker decided to self quarantine.  She's got about 2 days left in the process before she feels comfortable going back to work.