Farm gate COVID-19 testing part of Robinvale blitz

HUNDREDS of people across Robinvale and Euston have been tested for COVID-19 as part of the Victorian Government's state-wide blitz.

Testing is being carried out by Robinvale District Health Services in partnership with the Royal Flying Doctors Service and commenced on Monday, May 4.

RDHS chief executive officer Mara Richards said they had tested a wide cross-section of the community as part of the government's blitz.

"There's absolutely no evidence of any COVID-19 positive people at this stage," she said.

To gain the most widespread results, RDHS and RFDS have been utilising different ways of reaching out to the community to conduct tests, including "farm gate" testing.

Farm gate testing allows for agricultural workers to be tested on properties by the RDHS and RFDS Mobile Patient Care Team.

RFDS Health Group GP clinical lead Dr Bec Jacobs is assisting with coordinating the pathology.

"I know there's been concerns about the farm gate testing but we would encourage anyone with symptoms, whether they have worked on a farm or not, to get screened," she said.

"I am no more concerned about our farm workers than I am with anyone else in the community at the moment."

Ms Richards said they were doing as much testing as possible and many farm owners had expressed interest in having the Mobile Patient Care Team come and test willing workers.

"A lot of the farms have been very responsible with getting their workforce COVID-19 ready," she said.

Ms Richards said it was important health services used the testing results as a way of seeing what was happening in their communities.

"Part of the testing blitz is making sure we don't have unexpected results," Dr Jacobs added.

"I'm hoping in our community we don't have unexpected results but we never know, that's why we're doing the testing."

Dr Jacobs said when the blitz finished on Sunday, May 9 they still wanted people with symptoms of the virus to get tested.

People in towns such as Robinvale or Manangatang who are struggling to receive healthcare or have questions regarding COVID-19 can call RDHS on (03) 5051 8160.