Hundreds in Hoke tested for COVID-19 at free drive-through site

By Catharin Shepard • Staff writer • More than 300 people in Hoke County have gotten tested for COVID-19 at a free drive-through testing site provided through a Harris Teeter partnership.

The site at Don Steed Elementary signed up at least 126 people for testing Friday, and tested 140 people Saturday and another 94 people Monday, according to the Hoke County Health Department. The goal is to test 250 people per day.

Results from the FDA-approved self-administered nasal swab test come back within about 72 hours.

Harris Teeter is partnering with Kroger Health and The Little Clinic to offer the COVID-19 testing, according to a press release.

To schedule an appointment, go online to and sign up. There is no cost for the test. Don Steed Elementary School is located at 800 Philippi Church Road.

Testing will be available Friday, May 22; Saturday, May 23; Friday, May 29; and Saturday, May 30. Testing won’t take place on Memorial Day, Monday, May 25. Testing runs from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on available days, by appointment only.

Local cases

As of Tuesday, there were 160 known cases of COVID-19 in Hoke County, according to the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services.

Some of the most recently identified cases in Hoke County include:

  • Two-year-old girl who tested positive May 17 at the Hoke County Health Department, after being around a COVID-19 positive family member
  • 23-year-old man who became ill May 11 and tested positive May 15 at the Hoke County Health Department, and is related to another person who has COVID-19
  • 63-year-old woman who became ill May 15 and tested positive May 15 at Next Care
  • 70-year-old man who tested positive May 17 at a Bladen County healthcare provider

Many of the people in Hoke County who tested positive more than two weeks ago have since recovered from the illness. That includes the 23 people, including 14 residents, who tested positive in the outbreak at Canyon Hills child behavioral health facility.

The Canyon Hills residents were asymptomatic when they tested positive in late April. The outbreak status at that facility is set to end June 1, according to the Health Department.

So far, there have not been any deaths in Hoke County due to COVID-19. More than 690 people in all of North Carolina have died of coronavirus-related causes.

The 160 tally includes the total number of cases of COVID-19 in Hoke County, including people who are currently isolated and those who have recovered. The Health Department is checking in with people on a weekly basis, and conducting contact tracing.

Donations needed for soup kitchen

The Open Door Soup Kitchen in Raeford is holding a food drive to help meet the needs of the Hoke County community.

The soup kitchen is seeking immediate donations of canned and nonperishable foods.

To donate canned goods or nonperishable food items, drop off all donations at the rear of the soup kitchen building.

Open Door Soup Kitchen is located at 320 Turnpike Road in Raeford. For more information, contact Rev. Al Anderson at (404) 971-7408; or Janice at (910) 703-4064; or Betty at (910) 496-5787.

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