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Kauai closing county-run COVID testing sites

                                A home COVID-19 test kit.
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A home COVID-19 test kit.

Kauai County will close its COVID-19 testing centers at the end of February.

The county said its testing centers at Kauai War Memorial Convention Hall and mobile van sites will offer their last COVID tests on Feb. 28.

“We are incredibly grateful to our partners with the Kauai District Health Office, Kauai Emergency Management Agency, Department of Parks and Recreation, and all our past and present staff of our COVID testing sites for keeping our community safe,” said Mayor Derek Kawakami in a news release. “Most importantly, I want to thank our residents and visitors for your commitment these past three years to keeping Kauai one of the safest places in the country during the pandemic.”

The county began offering free COVID testing at the convention hall in October 2020, and mobile testing in July 2021.

To date, the county said its testing sites have run nearly 90,000 COVID-19 rapid PCR tests.

Dr. Janet Berreman, Kauai District Health Officer, thanked everyone who staffed the testing centers and encouraged people to order free home test kits.

“Our community has been fortunate to have such robust and accessible testing, especially during the COVID-19 surges we saw last year,” she said in the release. “Fortunately, home tests are now widely available and are very effective. Please order your free home test kits now, if you haven’t already done so.”

The county said home tests are recommended if one begins having COVID symptoms such as fever, sore throat, or runny nose, five days after close contact with someone with COVID, or before gathering with a group of people, especially those at risk of severe disease.

Kauai County, along with the Kauai District Health Office, also plans to distribute free home tests at various neighborhood centers this spring.

The U.S. government is also sending free home COVID tests to households via U.S. mail, which can be ordered at covid.gov/tests or 1-800-232-0233.

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