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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — Huntsville Hospital issued an urgent message for citizens of Madison County: Don’t visit the Emergency Room for COVID-19 tests or any symptoms that don’t require immediate care.

Because of the record number of patients with COVID symptoms going to the ER, the hospital says wait times for the emergency department have gotten significantly longer.

The hospital urges anyone experiencing non-life-threatening COVID symptoms like a sore throat and a stuffy nose to please stay home.

They ask people to instead contact their primary care doctor or visit an urgent care clinic.