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The Burlington County Health Department is making changes to its COVID-19 testing program to further improve access and make it easier than ever to get tested.
Starting Monday, May 17, the County will offer no-cost testing five days a week at four rotating locations in the county, rather than testing three days at a single, centralized testing site.
The new testing hours and locations are:
“Vaccines have helped us turn the corner in our fight against the virus, but the pandemic is not over,” said Dr. Herb Conaway, director of the Burlington County Health Department. “New COVID-19 cases may be down and social-distancing rules are being relaxed, but we must continue to be on our guard and take steps to protect our family, friends and co-workers, and testing continues to be one of our most effective tools to fight the spread. It’s why our County is expanding its testing program. We want to make it even easier for those who suspect they may be sick or had contact with an infected person to get a test.”
The testing clinics are being offered through a new partnership between the County and NDS Wellness and are open to all Burlington County residents ages 5 and up, plus anyone who works in or attends school in the county.
No appointments are needed, and a doctor’s prescription is not required.
The test involves a short nasal swab, so there are no restrictions on eating, drinking or smoking before the test. However, persons must wear masks at the test site and are asked to blow or clean their noses thoroughly prior to testing. Test results are expected within 72 hours.
In addition to the new rotating test clinics, the County continues to offer a saliva-based, home testing option. Participants must register online at www.homecovidtest.org to obtain a mail-order test kit and instructions on how to schedule a Zoom tele-health meeting with a health care worker to oversee sample collection.
The Health Department is also forming a rapid-testing program for youth sports teams. Municipal recreation departments and sports programs interested in participating should email the health department at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Conaway said even persons who are fully vaccinated should undergo testing if they have COVID-19 symptoms or have been in close contact with someone who is infected with the virus.
“It’s a fast, easy process and will help us identify any outbreaks before they become new surges,” he said.
Burlington County was one of the first counties in the state to launch a COVID-19 testing program. To date, the County has tested more than 40,000 people.
“From the very beginning of this pandemic, our County has made it our top priority to deliver the assistance our residents and businesses needed to get through this crisis. Making sure testing is available was a huge plus here, and our Board remains committed to ensuring it continues to be accessible,” said Commissioner Deputy Director Dan O’Connell, the Board liaison to the Health Department. “We also want to encourage our residents to take advantage of these different testing services, even if only to gain peace of mind. Your family, friends and community will be the better for it.”