Putnam Distributes COVID Tests to Help Stem Spread of Variant

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Putnam County is distributing thousands of rapid COVID tests to CAP, food pantries, shelters, libraries, senior citizen centers and houses of worship in an effort to stem the spread of the Omicron variant and keep schools and businesses open.

The county received 4,437 rapid antigen test kits from the state in its first shipment and more are expected. The drive-in test sites are open from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. on weekdays for school children and school district staff and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. seven days a week for all other Putnam County residents. The Paladin Center and Philipstown Rec sites opened on December 27 and tested more than 4,500 people and found that 810, or 17%, were positive for COVID.

“Putnam County entered into a public/private partnership with Ambulnz to set up testing centers in Carmel and Philipstown where our residents can get the services they need,” said County Executive MaryEllen Odell. “Not all of our residents can easily reach those testing sites, however, so we are distributing these home tests to help them get fast, accurate test results in order to protect themselves, their loved ones and our communities.”

Results from the rapid antigen test kits the county is distributing may not be accepted by airlines, some work settings or by medical facilities requiring Covid clearance before medical procedures. People who need testing for those reasons should secure a PCR test from their doctor’s office or elsewhere.

The New York State Department of Health guidelines for isolating and quarantining have been shortened to five days. For the latest information, see https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/quarantines-contacts

The Putnam County Department of Health offers clinics for vaccines and booster shots every Tuesday. An appointment is required. See the PCDOH website for more information: https://www.putnamcountyny.com/health/.

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