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Posted Friday, June 19th, 2020

Residents Directed to Pharmacies and Medical Facilities for COVID Testing

Morris County will close its COVID-19 drive-thru testing center at County College of Morris at the end of next week, with the last scheduled day of free testing set for Friday, June 26.

The center, which was operated in coordination with Atlantic Health Systems, is closing because many other test providers are now available, including numerous urgent care facilities and pharmacies across the county offering nasal swab and saliva tests.

photo shows Atlantic Health nurses in full gear at county COVID-19 testing site

Atlantic Health nurses in full gear at county COVID-19 testing site

“We are greatly indebted to all of the agencies and volunteers that came together to set up and operate this testing center during the height of the COVID-19 crisis in our county,” said Morris County Freeholder Director Deborah Smith. “They acted with incredible professionalism, treating our residents with great care during a very trying time for all of us. On behalf of all county residents, we thank them.”

“The skills and organizational powers of the partners in this effort made creation of the  testing site a successful response to help residents who were affected by the devastating virus. Its ultimate success hinged on all the partners communicating seamlessly, rapidly resolving any issues, and caring about the physical and emotional toll on clients who used the site,” said Morris County Sheriff James M. Gannon.

The following agencies have been integral to the CCM test center operation: Morris County Office of Health Management, Atlantic Health Systems, Morris County Medical Reserve Corps (all volunteers), Morris County Office of Emergency Management, Morris County Public Safety Academy staff, Morris County Sheriff’s Office, Morris County Park Police, and County College of Morris.

The county testing site opened on March 30 to help deal with a crush of people who needed COVID tests and who had flooded hospitals and medical facilities to get testing.

Those facilities, at that time,  were overwhelmed with treating COVID cases, and also had a severe shortage of testing supplies and personal protective equipment. The county stepped in to help deal with the health emergency situation.

Sheriff James M. Gannon and Morris County Park Police Sgt. Jeffrey Taylor at CCM testing site

Sheriff James M. Gannon and Morris County Park Police Sgt. Jeffrey Taylor at CCM testing site

In the nearly three months of operation, the CCM site provided nasal swab tests to more 7,000 people. When testing started, there was a 43 percent positive rate among residents with symptoms and prescriptions who were tested at the county center. Those positive numbers have now dropped dramatically, with positive results for the past few weeks at less than 1 percent of those tested.

Residents now can get tested at a variety of sites in Morris County that are providing the Swab Test (SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR), which is the “gold standard” test to determine if you have COVID-19.  There also are other locations in the county now offering the swab and/or saliva test.

The NJDOH/State COVID-19 site has a test site locator and provides a tool for self-assessment, instructions, and information on the types of tests, including issues with serology, or antibody tests.

Residents are strongly encouraged to first speak with their primary healthcare provider prior to being tested.

You can still make an appointment: Visit the Morris County Office of Health Management’s COVID-19 information site for more information on the county testing center and to make an appointment for the remaining days of its operation.