A new COVID-19 testing site begins operating in Southampton Village tomorrow, Thursday, April 30. Testing will be available by appointment only every Tuesday and Thursday from 10 a.m.–3 p.m. at the Hudson River Health Care (HRHCare) Kraus Family Health Center at 330 Meeting House Lane, adjacent to Southampton Hospital.
The site will be open to East Hampton and Southampton Town residents, thanks to consistent advocacy from South Fork residents and officials, and a generous donation from Hamptons Health Society, a local not-for-profit, which raised $20,000 through local donations to help fund testing facility operations and provide free testing to any uninsured resident in need of financial assistance.
HRHCare is testing at most of its health centers throughout Suffolk County, including Southampton and Riverhead on the East End, with other sites opening soon. A Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) that manages all of Suffolk County’s community health centers, HRHCare is operating 12 pop-up testing sites throughout its network.
When Southampton Village Mayor Jesse Warren learned that a testing site could open at HRHCare’s Southampton location if funds were made available, he reached out to the Hamptons Health Society for help. The not-for-profit had recently been instrumental in raising money to procure ventilators for the hospital and helped acquire personal protective equipment for local healthcare workers.
“This team effort is making it possible for those without means to get tested for free,” Warren said in a statement about the new facility. “I am grateful for the generous financial support from the community and the advocacy of all the South Fork elected leaders that helped make this local testing facility a reality.”
A representative of the Hamptons Health Society stressed the importance of testing in helping protect our community from the serious threat of COVID-19 (coronavirus). Anyone with shortness of breath, a persistent cough, temperature above 100.5 degrees, or having been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 is encouraged to call 845-553-8030 to ask for a test. No one will be turned away due to insurance or immigration status.
HRHCare Southampton also remains open for information and referral on COVID-19, as well as telemedicine appointments via video chat or regular phone calls, with extended hours available. Appointments can be made by calling 1-844-HRH-CARE, texting “telemed” to 21000, or by visiting hrhcare.org. New patients are welcome. Current patients can schedule telemedicine visits with their regular doctor.
The new testing site is supported by several entities. Southampton Hospital owns the property where testing will occur, the Southampton Village Police Department is covering traffic control and security, and Suffolk County is providing educational materials. The testing site is also supported by Southampton Town and East Hampton Town.
Along with Mayor Warren’s statement, a various local officials added words of support to the testing site announcement, including New York State Assemblyman Fred Thiele, Suffolk Legislator Bridget Fleming, Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman and East Hampton Town Supervisor Peter Van Scoyoc.
HRHC CEO Anne Kauffman Nolon, MPH said pop-up testing is a critical part of the community response against the coronavirus, and for protecting their patients and staff, adding, “We will continue expanding our response to the COVID-19 pandemic until we prevail, for the sake of our patients and our communities.”