ESSEX COUNTY AREA, NJ -- A drive-through testing site for Essex County residents who have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms will be opening in Weequahic Park in Newark on Thursday.

The site will open on Thursday and Saturday, when 100 tests per day will be administered. It will then be open next week on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, when 150 tests per day will be administered each day. The testing site is for Essex County residents; appointments are mandatory. Residents must arrive by car.

“The most effective way that elected officials and public health professionals can get a handle on how far-reaching COVID-19 has become is to test residents for the virus,” said Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr., Freeholder President Brendan Gill and Vice-President Wayne Richardson in a joint statement. “These screenings are in high demand and we ask for the public’s cooperation throughout this process. We encourage our residents to continue to take precautions to prevent the spread of the virus and not place themselves in situations where they may be exposed."

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Essex County residents also can get tested for COVID-19 in West Caldwell at The Doctor’s Office Urgent Care of West Caldwell, 556 Passaic Ave. (phone: (973) 808-2273).

Anyone wishing to be tested must meet specific testing criteria, which includes a fever of at least 99.6 degrees and respiratory symptoms of shortness of breath. Appointments will be scheduled from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Those who do not meet the criteria will not receive an appointment. If you are exhibiting severe symptoms, contact your local health care provider or local health department for guidance.

Residents can visit www.EssexCOVID.org, where they will be required to complete a short online screening process before an appointment is scheduled. Residents will be asked several health-related questions and detail any symptoms they have related to the coronavirus. Upon completion of the survey, they will be informed if they are eligible for the screening. If they are eligible, a confirmation number will be provided; residents must bring the confirmation number with them to their appointment.

Residents also can register by calling the Essex County Office of Emergency Management at (973) 324-9950. The call-in center will be open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. An operator will help them complete the initial survey and issue the confirmation number. Residents must bring the confirmation number with them to their appointment.

Tests are being offered free of charge to Essex County residents. Having health insurance is not a requirement. Follow-up contact will be made to assess the continuing health of the person who completed the screening.

Medical personnel from RWJBarnabas Health System, Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, University Hospital, Hackensack Hospital, Essex County Hospital and nurses from public schools in Essex County are staffing the testing sites and call-in center. Security at the site is being provided by the Essex County Sheriff’s Office and Newark Police Department.

Essex County will continue to administer the virus screening as long as supplies of test kits, gowns, facial masks and gloves last.

Residents can help stop the spread of Novel Coronavirus by washing their hands frequently, using hand sanitizer after touching hard surfaces, staying home if they feel sick, practicing social distancing and avoiding spending any time in crowds of people. Residents are also reminded to adhere to restrictions enacted by Gov. Phil Murphy, which include a curfew between the hours of 8 p.m. and 5 a.m. and restrict their traveling unless it is absolutely necessary.

Here is a partial list of COVID-19 testing centers in northern and central New Jersey:

The Doctor’s Office Urgent Care of West Caldwell

    556 Passaic Ave., West Caldwell — 973-808-2273

CityMD Urgent Care Centers

    617 Broad Street, Newark — 862-201-4596
    399 Route 10, East Hanover — 908-557-9808

Atlantic Health MedeCenters

    418 Route 18, East Brunswick — 732-613-6168
    225 US Route 46, Totowa — 973-256-0452
    346 Route 46, Rockaway — 973-627-4870

Bergen County Community College (drive-through)

    400 Paramus Rd, Paramus — Lots B & C

Howell Urgent Care Center

    4074 US Highway 9, Howell — 732-886-7342

Hamilton Square Urgent Center

    811 Route 33, Hamilton — 609-587-8298

InFocus Urgent Care

    64 Princeton Hightstown Rd., Princeton Junction — 609-799-7009

PNC Bank Arts Center *Drive-thru

    116 Garden State Pkwy., Holmdel

Kean University, Union