COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — The Ohio Department of Health is prioritizing free rapid tests for schools and colleges in Ohio. It’s putting a pause on distribution to other community partners like libraries and health departments.
So where can you find a test if you need one as soon as possible? Rapid COVID test kits continue to be in high demand, but short supply.
“Three or four weeks, they must have just gotten a shipment in, and so my wife picked up two,” said Larry Driggs. He counts himself lucky to have been able to get a few kits from his local library back in December.
“Since March of last year, we have distributed about 200,000 of these testing kits,” said Ben Zenitsky with the Columbus Metropolitan Library. He added these last few weeks their branches were giving out between 12,000 to 16,000 a week.
But now they are out until further notice. With short supply, the Ohio Department of Health is pausing distribution to community partners like libraries.
ODH says people can seek testing kits or clinics at pharmacies — if they’re available, many are out of stock.
Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff also highlighted testing sites in partnership with the Ohio National Guard.
“Many, many sites now across the state are being supported including ones in communities like Zanesville, the areas like Chillicothe so we are aiming to deploy these capabilities as broadly in the state as possible,” said Dr. Vanderhoff during a news conference Thursday.
The state is currently waiting on a delayed shipment of 800,000 tests.
“Certainly we look forward to getting more in our locations and rest assured — we will be screaming it from the rooftops as soon as we do,” said Zenitsky.
CAS is one of the testing sites in Columbus working with the Ohio National Guard and OSU Wexner Medical Center.
The new testing site is located on the first floor of the CAS parking garage at 2540 Olentangy River Road, Columbus. It will have the capacity to test up to 1,000 people each day. Testing services will be offered Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon. COVID-19 testing will be open to the entire community by appointment only.