Hospital emergency rooms in the Killeen area were busy this week as local COVID cases rise and COVID rapid tests are getting harder to find.

The H-E-B store on Stan Schlueter Loop was sold out of at-home COVID tests Thursday, and that same afternoon at a rapid testing site near the intersection of Bunny Trail and Stan Schlueter Loop, at least 40 people waited in line in order to get their noses swabbed.

Julia Villamil, 41, a sales coordinator at a Killeen car dealership, said she waited in the COVID test line for about 90 minutes at the request of her workplace. She said Thursday’s test results were very important to her family.

“It’s very important because we have little ones. We have to be safe,” Villamil said. “My dad has hypertension and other persisting conditions.”

Villamil said she was at another testing location nearby, but the line was too long.

“We were down the road, but that one was worse than this one,” she said.

Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center at Fort Hood posted on Facebook Thursday that its emergency department was experiencing higher than normal patient volumes and long wait times.

“To help minimize wait times and address urgent needs during this period, we encourage patients to utilize their medical homes or a TRICARE authorized urgent care clinic,” according to the post.

Darnall also said its respiratory clinic, where COVID tests are conducted, would be closed for the New Year’s holiday, and would reopen on Monday.

On its Facebook page Thursday, Baylor Scott & White Medical Center in Temple told area residents to understand that its emergency rooms and urgent care facilities were for patients needing “higher levels of care.”

Questions to Seton Medical Center in Harker Heights and AdventHealth-Central Texas in Killeen about the status of their emergency rooms Thursday and Friday were not immediately returned.

According to the website,, wait times for the ER at AdventHealth, Seton and Baylor Scott & White have wait times ranging from 286 minutes to 338 minutes as of Friday afternoon.

On Dec. 1, there were 55 new COVID cases reported in Bell County, according to the county health district. But on Dec. 30, the number of new cases for the day was 345, as a new wave was beginning to emerge.

In the Killeen area, over-the-counter rapid COVID test kits were out of stock in many stores, but if residents are wanting to get tested, the Neighborhood Market Walmarts are offering testing. Walmart Supercenters do not offer testing, a pharmacist told the Herald on Wednesday.


(6) comments


If the PCR test couldn’t tell the difference between a cold, the flu or covid how did hospitals know people had covid?

Because Covid pays the hospitals more money.

its science


2020 ... I ignored the fear-mongers and lived life normally.

2021 ... I ignored the fear-mongers and lived life normally.

I’ll give you one guess what I’m going to do in 2022. 😂


Let me know when the Plandemic has gotten serious enough to shut down the southern border. Until then I will just live a normal life.


My goal next year is to break a world record by standing-in-line for 578 hours to get tested for a cold.


I wonder how many people currently hospitalized for covid are actually suffering from vaccine injuries?


Setbacks, Inconsistencies Mount For CDC Under Walenksy.

Walensky told the public in a Good Morning America interview Wednesday that PCR tests for COVID-19 can stay positive for up to 12 weeks after infection. For that reason, Walensky said, a negative PCR test would not be needed to leave quarantine or isolation under new CDC guidelines.

So we have been relying on bunk PCR tests that have been RECALLED for almost 2 years!

The PCR tears are too sensitive, have multiple false positives, & can’t differentiate between COVID & the FLU!

Americans have been forced to stay home, miss events & isolate themselves for almost two years now based on potentially false positives from oversensitive BUNK PCRs. The CDC chooses NOT to inform the public of the TRUTH!

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