NYC to launch 5 antibody testing sites across the city, hoping to test 5,000 per day

Mayor Bill de Blasio says every day more and more people are getting tested across New York City, and he says this testing will give people a clearer picture of what the coming months will bring.

News 12 Staff

May 7, 2020, 12:25 PM

Updated 1,499 days ago

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Mayor Bill de Blasio says every day more and more people are getting tested across New York City, and he says this testing will give people a clearer picture of what the coming months will bring.
He says there are two kinds of tests, the diagnostic PCR test and the antibody tests.
The diagnostic test shows if a patient currently has the coronavirus and allows for the city to take immediate action.
The antibody test shows if the patient was exposed to the disease in the past. Allows for patients to see if they were able to beat the virus as well as allows for researchers to better understand COVID-19.
The more people New York City tests, the more information doctors and scientists have to fight the virus, according to the mayor.
The mayor also spoke about the partnership between the United States Department of Health and Human Services, and the CDC announced earlier this week that will offer antibody tests to 140,000 health care workers and first responders.
Beyond the testing for those on the front lines, the mayor announced that New York City will also be launching its own antibody survey in partnership with BioReference to understand COVID-19 spread and provide New Yorkers with individual results.
The mayor says the antibody tests will be free of charge and will launch next week. There will be five initial local testing sites in Morrisania, East New York, Upper Manhattan, Concord and Long Island City.
Up to 5,000 people will be testing per day with the goal of 70,000 people over the first two weeks.
Tests will be done by appointment with scheduling opening this Friday, by dedicated hotline, which will be launched Friday. Individuals should get results within 24 to 48 hours.
The city will also be expanding its tele-medicine. The city will launch a free “phone-a-clinician” hotline. The mayor says there have been 60,000 billable NYC Health + Hospitals tele-health visits at more than 300 clinics since the beginning of the crisis.
NYC Health + Hospitals is moving towards 80% of all ambulatory visits via tele-health for the duration of the crisis, with 16,000 a week.
The mayor says a tele-health promotion will be sent via multi-lingual direct mail to millions of households, to further spread the word.
As for the nightly subway closures, the mayor said 361 homeless people were engaged Wednesday night, with 218 of them accepting services. He says 196 went to shelters, and 22 were admitted to the hospital.
The mayor also announced New York City will augment its approach to prevent gender-based violence during COVID-19.
The Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence (ENDGBV) will convene a COVID-19 response work group.
The group will engage a diverse group of 20 citywide service providers, including shelter, legal services, counseling and mental health.


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