After receiving about 1,000 test kits each last week from the state, Columbia and Greene counties are rolling out a series of COVID-19 clinics.
Columbia County tested about 80 people at its first testing clinic May 8 at Columbia-Greene Community College. Greene County held its first clinic Saturday at Catskill Middle School and tested 62, Greene County Legislature Chairman, Patrick Linger, R-New Baltimore, said.
Seven more testing dates between the two counties are planned.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday that the Capital Region could begin reopening Wednesday after meeting the final metric and hiring an additional 166 contact tracers, for a total of 383.
Greene County submitted about 30 contact tracer candidates, Linger said Monday. The candidates include members of the Greene NY Medical Reserve Corps, members of the Public Health Department who may be reassigned and staff at Coxsackie Transport.
Columbia County Department of Health Director Jack Mabb said he believes more tests will be needed to continue to meet the state’s requirements.
Columbia County will need to test 1,900 residents every month, Mabb said while participating in a call with the Columbia Comeback initiative.
“We need more tests, we need the capacity to do more tests and that is something that can only come from the state of New York,” he said.
Columbia County’s upcoming test dates will be May 27 and June 2 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. outside the former John L. Edwards Elementary School and June 7 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Chatham Fairgrounds.
People experiencing COVID-19 symptoms such as fever, cough, trouble breathing or loss of taste or smell who want to be tested must fill out forms for the test clinic of their choice.
Columbia County Department of Health staff will contact residents who sign up with their appointment times and PIN numbers. Residents must bring their PIN numbers and a form of identification to the clinic.
In Greene County, testing is available by appointment for symptomatic people and essential workers.
Upcoming test dates in Greene County from 3-6 p.m. include Coxsackie-Athens Central School on May 28, followed by Cairo-Durham Elementary School on June 4, Greenville Elementary School on June 11 and the Windham Wastewater Treatment Plant on June 18.
People who wish to be tested must fill out an online screening form. For people without internet access, call 518-719-3600 and press “1” to complete the registration process. Phone registration is available May 22, 26 and 27 until 4 p.m.
Residents who qualify will receive their appointment times and PIN numbers from the Greene County Public Health Department. The PIN number and a form of identification must be brought to the appointment.
Community Action of Greene County will have its Mobile Food Pantry at each testing location. Residents in need of food are asked to call 518-943-9205.
Walmart will begin testing outside its Catskill store May 22. Drive-thru testing will be available for adults who are symptomatic and essential workers Monday, Wednesdays and Fridays from 7-9 a.m. People who wish to be tested must register using Quest Diagnostics’ portal at www.MyQuestCOVIDTest.com
“Walmart is part of the community, and we are proud to help support the expansion of COVID-19 testing in Catskill during this unprecedented time,” Walmart Public Affairs Director for New York Jason Klip said. “We are grateful to our associates who keep our stores running, our pharmacists who support these testing sites, and to Quest Diagnostics and local officials as we work together to open the site and help our community.”
Greene County Emergency Services is distributing masks in packs of five, limited to one pack per household from 10 a.m. to noon at the following locations this week: New Baltimore Town Hall and Freehold Firehouse on Wednesday; and Athens Firehouse and Palenville Firehouse on Thursday.
Masks were previously distributed at the Windham Wastewater Treatment Plant, Hunter Town Hall, Coxsackie Village Hall, the parking lot on the corner of Water and Bridge street in Catskill and Greene County Mental Health in Cairo.
WellNow Urgent Care, with locations in Hudson and Albany, is offering traditional COVID-19 testing and antibody testing. These tests are available to patients experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or who have been exposed to the virus. No appointment is necessary, according to wellnow.com, and patients will receive results in three to five days.
To be tested at SUNY Albany, call the state’s COVID-19 hotline 1-888-364-3065 and go through a screening process to be approved for testing, at which point a PIN number will be assigned.
Albany County is partnering with the Whitney M. Young Jr. Health Center to offer mobile testing throughout the county. Testing can also be received at the center after pre-approval and scheduling an appointment. A list of the mobile locations can be found at https://www.wmyhealth.org/covid-19-updates/covid-19-testing/
To schedule an appointment, call 518-465-4771.
Rite Aid is offering testing at its locations in Colonie and Kingston. Rite Aid has an online pre-screening form, which patients can fill out and then schedule an appointment.
CVS has testing in eight states, but the pharmacy chain does not have the service in New York at this time.
Walgreens has testing services in New York, although it is unclear if it is offered at all locations.
Ulster County has three testing sites: TechCity in Kingston, Kingston Midtown Mobile Testing Site at Grand Street and Ellenville Regional Hospital.
For the TechCity and Ellenville locations, a doctor’s order is required. For the Midtown Kingston location, no doctor’s order is needed but an appointment is required. To go through the screening process for an appointment, call 845-393-2730.