Arkansans' Preferred COVID-19 Testing Locations

J Prim Care Community Health. 2021 Jan-Dec;12:21501327211004289. doi: 10.1177/21501327211004289.


Introduction: A contributing factor to racial and ethnic disparities during the COVID-19 pandemic may be the accessibility and acceptability of COVID-19 testing. Previous studies found that access to testing has not been equitable across several sociodemographic indicators. This study documents the preferred testing locations and examines differences across sociodemographic factors with a specific focus on race and ethnicity.

Methods: This study includes a primary analysis of cross-sectional data using a self-administered digital survey distributed to Arkansas residents using ARresearch, a volunteer research participant registry. The survey had 1288 responses, and 1221 met eligibility criteria for inclusion in the survey. Participants provided sociodemographic information and were asked to select up to 3 preferred testing locations from 12 options. Chi-square tests assessed differences in testing site preference across relevant sociodemographic groups.

Results: Participants preferred drive-through clinics as their top location for COVID-19 testing, with 55% reporting this was their preferred method of testing. This pattern was consistent across all comparison groups (ie, age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, insurance status). Significant differences in testing location preference were observed across age, race and ethnicity, and education, with the most differences observed across race and ethnicity.

Conclusion: This study reveals that race and ethnicity are important to consider when deciding where to offer COVID-19 testing. The preferences for testing locations among the most vulnerable demographics will be used to develop targeted responses aimed at eliminating disparities in COVID-19 in Arkansas.

Keywords: Arkansas; COVID-19; health disparities; race and ethnicity; testing preferences.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Arkansas
  • Attitude*
  • COVID-19 / diagnosis*
  • COVID-19 Testing*
  • Consumer Behavior
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Ethnicity*
  • Female
  • Health Facilities*
  • Health Services Accessibility*
  • Health Status Disparities
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pandemics
  • Racial Groups*
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Young Adult