WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — If you’re looking to get a rapid COVID-19 test before seeing your family for Thanksgiving, look at this! Some Virginia libraries are offering free at-home test kits.
If you go on Amazon right now, many COVID-19 at-home test kits are sold out or may cost you. But at Williamsburg Regional Library, you can grab a test and get your results in 15 minutes.
Alicia Phinney, circulation services director at the Williamsburg Regional Library, said, "We started with 400. We already ordered another 350 and were gearing up for the weekend."
With Thanksgiving just days away, Phinney said she's anticipating a lot of families to pick up a test this weekend. Even if you can't come by in person, one can be dropped off for you.
"Our library vehicle, the bookmobile, goes out to 24 different stops in the community and their neighborhoods, but they also go to a Walmart parking lot, so we're trying to make them as available as we can in the community," said Phinney.
According to health leaders, it’s fast and simple. When you pick up the kit, the user will be guided by trained proctors who will help with the testing process that walks you through how to open the kit, conduct the test and swab your nose. They then help you interpret the results.
Dr. Laurie Forlano with the Virginia Department of Health said, "Most recent data shows a very slight increase in testing this week compared to last week."
Pharmacists in Williamsburg said they are seeing an increase, but for PCR testing.
T.W Taylor, pharmacist and owner of the Williamsburg Drug Company, said, "We do testing and get your result right there, and our PCR test is 100% accurate and we get a result in about 30 minutes."
According to Dr. Ferlano, "Poquoson library requested 72 tests in their initial shipment, and Williamsburg requested 432. Each library received their full orders on Monday, but due to high demand, both library systems have already requested more kits. Poquoson has requested another 72, and Williamsburg has requested another 360. Health officials continue to encourage a rapid test or a PCR test. The free at-home kits will last until the end of December.
If you’re looking to get free at-home COVID-19 test kits another option is Poquoson Public Library. Health leaders recommend for COVID-19 testing any urgent care and patient first near you will give you quick results before Thanksgiving.