MOUNT KISCO, N.Y. - Northern Westchester Hospital (NWH) now offers serology COVID-19 antibody testing at two locations for first responders and other essential workers who live or work in Armonk, Bedford, Chappaqua, Lewisboro, Mount Kisco, Pleasantville, Somers, North Salem, Yorktown, or Pound Ridge. NWH anticipates that testing for the public will begin by early June.
In compliance with NY State Department of Health (DOH) guidelines, effective immediately and through May 29 (closed Monday, May 25th for Memorial Day), NWH will offer antibody testing Monday through Friday, any time between 8 a.m. and noon or from 2-6 p.m., for first responders and essential workers who preregister. Testing is done at NWH’s Center for Healthy Living next to Whole Foods in Chappaqua Crossing or at the hospital’s main Campus at 400 East Main Street.
Antibody testing is available to the following priority groups:
- Animal care workers (e.g. veterinarians; automotive service and repair workers);
- bank tellers/workers; building code enforcement officers;
- correction/parole/probation officers; child care workers; client-facing case managers and coordinators; counselors (e.g. mental health, addiction, youth, vocational, crisis, etc.);
- delivery workers; dentists and dental hygienists; direct care providers;
- essential construction workers at occupied residences or buildings;
- faith-based leaders (e.g. chaplains, clergy); field investigators/regulators for health and safety; firefighters; food service workers/grocery store workers; funeral home workers;
- health care practitioners, professionals, aides, and support staff (e.g. physicians, nurses, public health personnel); human services providers; hotel/motel workers; laundry and dry cleaning workers;
- mail and shipping workers; maintenance and janitorial/cleaning workers; medical specialists, nutritionists and dietitians;
- occupational/physical/recreational/speech therapists; optometrists, opticians, and supporting staff;
- paramedics/emergency medical technicians (EMTs); police officers; psychologists/psychiatrists;
- residential care program managers; retail workers at essential businesses (e.g. grocery stores, pharmacies, convenience stores, gas stations, hardware stores);
- security guards and personnel; shelter workers and homelessness support staff; social workers;
- teachers/professors/educators; transit workers (e.g. airports, railways, buses, and for-hire vehicles; trash and recycling workers;
- and utility workers
“While we recognize that many people want this test, it is important for us to prioritize resources to meet the most urgent public health need,” said Marla Koroly, MD, NWH’s senior vice president for medical affairs and chief medical officer. “We fully expect to meet the demand in our communities as we continue to rollout testing beyond this priority group. Efforts to expand testing are critical to help scientists better understand how COVID-19 travels from person to person, why it affects people differently, whether the virus is seasonal like the flu, and if people can be reinfected.”
Serology or antibody testing is conducted with a simple blood draw to determine whether people who have been previously infected or exposed to COVID-19 have antibodies—proteins in the blood produced by the body’s immune system—that help fight infection.
Antibody testing does not diagnose COVID-19 infection, but a negative result means the absence of COVID-19 antibodies in the blood. Most commonly, this indicates someone has not been infected with the COVID-19 virus, but it does not rule-out early or recent infection. A positive result indicates a person has been exposed to COVID-19 and developed antibodies in their blood. At this point scientists are not sure how detected antibodies impact immunity and protect against re-infection.
Regardless of test results, it is essential for people to adhere to the Governor’s Executive Order and the New York State Department of Health guidelines for masking, social distancing and hand washing.
Testing updates will be posted on the NWH website at www.nwhc.net. People may opt to receive notifications by signing up for the hospital’s enewsletter on the website’s home page or by following NWH on social media.
Pre-registration for testing can be completed at https://bit.ly/3dFyuSG and participants will receive a confirmation email after successful preregistration. Please be sure to bring the following items to your appointment: Proof of Identification, proof of employment in one of the priority groups, a copy of your insurance card (copayments are waived, you will not be responsible). Please know that your temperature will be taken upon entry, per New York State regulation.
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