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Mount Sinai South Nassau hospital partners with town, county to provide rapid coronavirus testing in Oceanside

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Mount Sinai South Nassau is partnering with the Town of Hempstead and Nassau County to begin offering rapid Covid-19 testing to the public at the hospital’s drive-through testing site in Oceanside.

The rapid tests will be offered at no charge. The drive-through site, at the hospital’s Washington Avenue entrance, was scheduled to open to the public — by appointment only — on Dec. 1, after the Herald went to press.

Testing will be provided between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and Saturday from 7 to 11 a.m. To make an appointment for a test, call (516) 390-2888 from Monday to Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. or Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon. Individuals 17 or younger must have written consent or be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian to be tested.

“Expanding testing is one way to combat the virus,” MSSN President and CEO Richard J. Murphy said, according to a news release. “If you know you are positive, you can stay home and self-isolate, reducing the possibility of spreading the disease. We’re pleased to be teaming up with the Town of Hempstead to help meet demand for more testing in the communities we serve.”

The Hempstead Town Board unanimously approved a grant on Nov. 23 to MSSN to expand testing to the public, using nearly $446,000 in federal CARES Act money. To address the recent surge in Covid-19 cases in the Five Towns community, MSSN partnered with Nassau County to establish two rapid testing sites there. The county has secured additional rapid test kits to enable the hospital and the town to further expand testing at the hospital’s Oceanside campus. The CARES funding will help cover any additional tests kits that are required, staffing costs and infrastructure needed for the drive-through site.

“As coronavirus infection rates rise across Long Island, we want to continue doing our part to expand free Covid-19 testing options for all Town of Hempstead residents,” Hempstead Town Supervisor Don Clavin said in a news release. “Through this collaboration with Mount Sinai South Nassau, we are now proud to offer free Covid-19 rapid testing to residents. Thank you to Mount Sinai South Nassau’s team of front-line heroes for providing top quality healthcare for our residents and working together as we combat the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.”

Mount Sinai South Nassau has already tested more than 10,000 patients at its Oceanside drive-through site, but to date the testing has only been open to patients being admitted to the hospital or coming for a procedure. The two sites in the Five Towns tested over 800 residents from Oct. 20 to Nov. 25.

“Robust testing has proven to be a vital tool to help contain the spread of Covid-19 and currently more than 10,000 residents are able to be tested for the virus per day,” Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said, according to the news release. “But as we see upticks in New York state and in our local communities, I am committed to further expanding testing throughout the county to ensure all residents readily have access to it.  Thank you to the team at Mount Sinai South Nassau for opening this drive-through rapid testing site and for the life-saving work they do every day."

Courtesy Mount Sinai South Nassau; compiled by Mike Smollins