As Fall Approaches, Health Department Stresses Importance of COVID Testing

The Greenfield Health Department reminds residents that COVID-19 testing remains an important tool in navigating the pandemic, particularly as children head back to school and there are more indoor activities. Though the federal government is suspending its distribution of free at-home testing kits through the U.S. Postal Service on Friday, ample tests remain available locally.

“We have plenty of at-home rapid tests available at the Health Department and we are fortunate to have a PCR testing site at Greenfield Community College,” said Health Director Jennifer Hoffman. “Based on wastewater testing, COVID activity remains quite high in Greenfield and the GCC site is still processing about 40 tests a day.”

“Though PCR testing remains the gold standard in determining whether you have COVID, at-home antigen testing is an important step if you believe you have been exposed to the virus or you are showing symptoms,” said Greenfield City Epidemiologist Jack Sullivan. “We are urging people, especially parents of school-age children, to report the results of at-home tests, either by calling the school nurse or the Health Department.”

Those who have not taken advantage of the free antigen tests provided by the post office can do so by going online to https://www.covid.gov/tests by Friday, September 2. Test kits can also be requested from the Health Department by calling 413-772-1404. In addition, people can purchase at-home tests at local pharmacies and other retailers or online, and be reimbursed for up to eight tests a month by their health plan. Positive test results can be reported to school nurses or the Health Department by calling 413-772-1404.

PCR testing remains available at Greenfield Community College’s East Building at 1 College Drive on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 1 to 4 p.m. Testing can be scheduled online at https://curative.com/sites/35435. There will be no charge to patients, but those who have health insurance must bring their insurance card. All patients must bring identification. The testing location will be closed on Labor Day.

The Greenfield Health Department will continue to offer free antigen testing at 20 Sanderson Street on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 7 to 10 a.m.

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