Health

Nearly 1K COVID Tests Daily

RANDOLPH (NJ) — On the opening day of Morris County’s COVID-19 testing facility, more than 800 people were given free COVID-19 test results. Officials expect the site to offer 800-900 tests every day for the next week, and possibly beyond until the increase in COVID-19 cases slows down.

“The center runs smoothly, with everyone being tested quite quickly upon arrival,” stated Tayfun Seen, director of Morris County Board of Commissioners.

Selen made these remarks as he and others toured the facility located in Randolph’s Student Center at County College of Morris. The tests were administered by phlebotomists, which applied nasal swabs.

Patients were informed that there has been a surge in national testing demand and delays in analysis. Results that are normally available within 24 to 48 hours can take up to three days to receive.

The center is open seven days a week, from 7 a.m. until 6:45 p.m. (except for 12:30-1 pm). Testing must be done by appointment only. You cannot walk into the facility without an appointment.

Morris County had previously maintained a testing facility in the same spot. However, officials shut it down in July because tests became easier and less demanded. As the state continues to increase its case numbers, the site was reopened.

The New Jersey Department of Health reported 21,691 cases — lower than Sunday’s total of 26,615 infections and Saturday’s 29,564 infections. However, it was well above any of the pre-omicron-variant state case numbers.

Representatives from local hospitals spoke on Friday to Morris County mayors and county leaders. They stated that the center would help reduce the number of emergency room visits caused by people who try to be tested at hospitals. Saint Clare’s Health and Atlantic Health System also stated that most COVID-19 patients who needed hospitalization were not given the booster shot.

John Kirkus, County Commissioner, stated that booster shots are essential. “That was the clear message that the Atlantic Health System gave us when we held a Friday update call. Only 5% of COVID patients are receiving their booster shots. Nearly all the boosted patients have underlying medical conditions and are often elderly. Atlantic Health System stated that they have ICU capacity, but booster shots were the key.

Officials observed a similar trend throughout the state. New Jersey has experienced a higher rate of infection among fully vaccinated people. Between Dec. 20 and 26, breakthrough infections accounted for 31,334 out of the state’s 101,000 cases. However, only four of the 2,640 COVID-19 patients were fully vaccinated. The same number of people who died of the virus (5 of 146) was seen in New Jersey.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only 43.5 percent of Morris County’s fully vaccinated residents have received their booster dose. This includes 47.5 percent of adults who are eligible for the booster. Get information about booster eligibility from the CDC.

According to the CDC, eleven people died in Morris County from COVID-19 over the past week.

This post was written by a medical professional at The Wellness Firm.  The Wellness Firm services include workplace flu clinics,  flu vaccinations, onsite rapid corporate employee Covid testing, the physical exam for employment, as well as American Heart Association CPR certification classes. Founded by local Firemen, The Wellness Firm has been providing a safer Tampa Bay since 2006.

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