Mayor encourages New Yorkers to get tested for COVID-19 on ‘Get Tested Day of Action’
The fight against coronavirus is far from over, but as other states continue to struggle with growing numbers, the numbers of New Yorkers testing positive is on the decline.
City officials were out Wednesday encouraging people to get tested in some of the hardest hit areas of the city.
According to the mayor, the goal is to get more than 150,000 New Yorkers tested in the next week.
Free coronavirus testing is available to all New Yorkers regardless of whether they're showing symptoms and the NYC Health + Hospitals Test and Trace Corps is leading the effort. The crops were out Wednesday, along with community members, volunteers and contact tracers passing out flyers at the St. James Recreation Center in the Bronx and the Maria Lawton Senior Center in Brooklyn as well as areas in Staten Island, Queens and Manhattan. They're handed out information on how and where to get tested as well as the benefits of repeated testing.
"People need to know that we're around your corner we’re in schools, were in pools, we're in community centers, so we are where you are, come see us, come know your status, let us help you, let us help you get connected other services that are going to allow you to isolate, to quarantine, to keep others from getting infected,” says Dr. Amanda Johnson, of NYC Health + Hospitals.
Dr. Johnson said those with a positive result will get a call from a contact tracer who will work with them to get in touch with other people who they've been in contact with, so that hopefully they can get tested and stop the virus from spreading.
Getting tested is something both the mayor and Gov. Andrew Cuomo have been pushing New Yorkers to do since the start of the pandemic. In the beginning it was a constant push to get more testing sites open, and now that they’re open the push is for New Yorkers to get tested.
The mayor says in most locations the test is free and New Yorkers do not need insurance to get a diagnostic test. It consists of a nasal or oral swab or a saliva sample and most results are returned in between three and five days.
In hopes of encouraging more people to get tested the mayor calls today the “Get Tested Day of Action.”
“We need everyone to be a part of this effort. Our city agencies are involved, of course, our Test and Trace Corp, community organizations and with a particular focus on the communities that have been hardest hit. So, testing makes such a difference. Now it's more and more available than ever. Let's get everyone tested,” says Mayor de Blasio.
He says there are more testing sites than ever before.