The city has set up five sites where New Yorkers can get one of 140,000 free coronavirus antibody tests, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Sunday.
New York City will test 140,000 everyday New Yorkers for COVID-19 antibodies as part of its Test and Trace Program to battle the coronavirus pandemic. Another 140,000 antibody tests will go to healthcare workers and first responders.
The antibody tests will come with a survey to help New York City Health + Hospitals officials in their tracking of the virus.
“It’s not just so you get the results that you deserve, but on top of that it helps the medical community and the City of New York to understand better what is happening with this disease,” de Blasio said.
Scientists are unsure right now whether a positive tests means a person will have full immunity, but the information is valuable in tracking the spread of the virus.
The antibody tests will be given at five different testing sites: Manhattanville Health Center in Manhattan, the NYPD Community Center on Pennsylvania Avenue in Brooklyn, 34-09 Queens Blvd. in Queens, 4006 Third Ave. in the Bronx and at the St. John Villa Academy in Staten Island.
New Yorkers can sign up for the tests by going to nyc.gov/antibodysurvey or calling (888)-279-0967.
The new tests are part of a massive test-and-trace program that de Blasio announced earlier this month.
So far, the city has trained 500 “tracers” who will test New Yorkers for infection, trace cases, and contacts and help isolate people who would not be able to do so otherwise. The tracers will enter field training next week and 100 will start tracing May 24, de Blasio said Sunday.
Johns Hopkins University is providing COVID-19 contact tracing training with support from former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, appointed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo to lead the statewide initiative.
De Blasio also announced that the city is ahead of schedule in its plan to ramp up testing.
A new partnership with CityMD clinics — which will test 6,000 New Yorkers a day across is 123 sites — has brought the New York City total tests up to 20,000 per day, a week before the May 25 goal of reaching that number.
De Blasio has said New York City needed hundreds of thousands of daily tests but would be unable to provide the necessary supplies without federal assistance.
“We’re going to keep growing,” de Blasio said. “Our goal is to continue to build that rapidly.”