Ocean County Press Release
TOMS RIVER – The drive thru COVID 19 testing site at Ocean County College, here, has been moved indoors because of the harsh winter weather.
"Even though we have recently installed a stronger structure for our staff and volunteers providing these tests, the winter weather we have been experiencing has made it difficult to perform these tests outside in a drive thru setting," said Ocean County Public Health Coordinator Daniel Regenye. "Starting Feb. 17 we have moved the testing indoors to the Gateway Building on the Ocean County College campus."
The site is operating from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and appointments are required. The health department and its partners can administer about 400 tests each day the site is open.
"We have 400 appointments that have been made for today at the testing site," Regenye said.
The greatest changes at the site is that anyone getting tested needs to park their car and enter building 101 in the campus for the test.
"All the paperwork for the test should already be completed during the online registration so the testing will not take any longer than it has when people did not leave their cars," he said.
Regenye said by moving the testing inside, the staff is no longer braving the elements which sometimes include cold temperatures, snow, rain, sleet and strong winds.
"This move was made to protect the staff and our volunteers," Regenye said. "We expect once the weather gets better moving toward the spring we will go back to the drive thru setting."
Ocean County Commissioner Gerry P. Little, who is liaison to the Ocean County Health Department, noted that more than 26,000 COVID 19 tests have been administered at the college site since it opened.
As of Feb. 16, Ocean County has recorded 49,203 cases of the coronavirus.
"This testing site has been run efficiently, providing these important tests for our County residents," Little said. "We have closely monitored the needs and consistently adjusted the hours of testing at the college to accommodate our residents."
The testing site located off of Hooper Avenue, here, provides tests for both symptomatic and asymptomatic County residents by appointment. It does not provide the COVID 19 vaccine.
To schedule an appointment for a test Ocean County residents can visit the Ocean County Health Department website at www.ochd.org. If residents have any questions, they can call the Health Department at 732-341-9700, Ext. 7411. Proof of residency will be required. All emergency responders can also access testing at the site.
"Testing shows if you have the virus even if you are asymptomatic," Regenye said. "This can help reduce the spread of the virus so long as people quarantine.
"We have always encouraged our residents to get tested," Regenye said.
"The testing site at OCC is the result of a successful partnership with the college, our area hospitals, Sheriff Michael Mastronardy and the Ocean County Office of Emergency Management, the Ocean County Health Department and a host of other collaborators who have come together to make this work for our citizens," said the Director of the Ocean County Board of Commissioners Gary Quinn. "All of the steps that we have taken thus far are to protect our citizens by helping to reduce the spread of this virus."
Residents can also call 732-380-5079 or 1-833-544-0288 if they have general questions about the coronavirus, exposure, quarantine and spread, contract tracing, testing and the vaccine.
Regenye noted there are other locations and testing sites for asymptomatic people that have opened throughout the state with some located in Ocean County.
Two websites providing this information are: https://covid19.nj.gov/pages/testing and https://covid19.nj.gov/pages/testing#test-sites.