Hamilton County shifts COVID-19 testing times as virus restrictions loosen across county and state

Staff photo by C.B. Schmelter / Hamilton County Health Department Administrator of Health Services Becky Barnes speaks during a press briefing before a tour of the Alstom COVID-19 testing site on Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020 in Chattanooga, Tenn.

Starting Thursday, COVID-19 testing at the Alstom site through the Hamilton County Health Department will run from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Becky Barnes, the administrator for the department, said the change was made to ensure better safety for staff at the site.

"The Health Department is adjusting the testing site hours by adapting to the shortening days to enhance safety for our workers," Barnes said in a statement. "The later shift will allow increased daylight and warmer temperatures."

(READ MORE: Hamilton County lifts COVID-19 restrictions on businesses, gatherings)

The testing site on Riverfront Parkway previously ran from 7:30 to 11 a.m. every day, and Barnes noted the schedule shift still allows for 4.5 hours of available testing every day. She said the department does not believe the shift will hurt the public's ability to access testing.