What to Know
- NYC is expanding its free antibody testing to 11 acute care facilities and select sites across the five boroughs; it plans to add another 11 sites next week; a positive test indicates a person had the virus and recovered
- Tests will be available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on a walk-n basis, with results delivered within 24 hours electronically via the public hospital health record system
- Antibody testing is thought to provide the fullest snapshot of the prevalence of COVID in any given place; state testing found up to 20 percent of NYC residents may have had the virus
New York City Health + Hospitals is now offering free antibody tests at its 11 acute care facilities and select sites across the five boroughs, the latest push to expand testing as the five boroughs look toward Phase III, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Thursday.
The antibody tests will be available to all New Yorkers who haven't had COVID-19 symptoms or a positive COVID-19 test within the past two weeks. The free testing will expand to nearly a dozen Gotham Community Heath Center sites as well starting June 29. Visit nyc.gov/covidtest to find a site near you.
Tests will be available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on a walk-n basis, with results delivered within 24 hours electronically via the public hospital health record system. New Yorkers with insurance will be asked for their information, but they won't be charged copays.
Antibody testing, while not 100 percent precise, is thought to provide the fullest snapshot of the prevalence of COVID in any given place. A positive result means you have had the virus at some point and recovered, even though you may never have known you were infected. Previous testing by the state found up to 20 percent of New York City residents had the coronavirus antibodies.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Thursday up to 20 million in the U.S. may have been infected at some point, 10 times the reported number.
Testing may be the most crucial component to monitoring and managing COVID spread, Gov. Andrew Cuomo and de Blasio has said. As part of Thursday's announcement, the mayor said the city will also open 20 testing sites in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Queens in partnership with SOMOS. Those will provide both diagnostic and antibody tests.
Sites will operate out of pediatric clinics to encourage families to get tested together. Clinics will run from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday, with some offering weekend hours. The city plans to open another 30 similar sites over the next few weeks, de Blasio said. Call 1-833-SOMOS-NY to make an appointment.