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Press Releases

NYC Test & Trace Corps Announces One Million COVID-19 Tests Administered in NYC Schools

Rigorous testing regimen underlies success at keeping school buildings open for in-person learning and school communities safe

May 05, 2021

New York, NY

The NYC Test & Trace Corps today announced that one million COVID-19 tests have been administered in New York City schools, a crucial part of the effort to keep school buildings open for in-person learning and school communities safe that has become a model for the nation recovering from the pandemic.
“New York City has shown the way in the fight against COVID-19, and our massive school-based testing effort is a major reason how we’ve been able to keep our schools safe and become a model for jurisdictions around the country,” said Dr. Ted Long, Executive Director of the NYC Test &Trace Corps and Senior Vice President for Ambulatory Care and Population Health at NYC Health + Hospitals. “With one million tests and remarkably low levels of transmission, we are ensuring the safety of our school buildings for staff and students so we can offer one of the most important parts of social development and educational opportunity – in person learning.”
New York City operates the nation’s largest and most comprehensive school-based testing regimen, with thousands of tests performed at hundreds of school locations every day. Under the current testing protocol, a randomly selected portion of staff and students at every school is tested each week.
Since the testing initiative began in October, COVID-19 transmission has remained consistently low in school buildings. The seven-day rolling average for citywide survey testing positivity currently stands at less than third of one percent, and continues to decline.
COVID-19 tests in NYC schools are administered by trained medical professionals using a nasal swab to collect the PCR test. Results are returned within 48 hours, with positive cases referred for additional action to break the chains of virus transmission.
The school-based testing initiative represents a model effort to identify, isolate and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in school buildings and communities. The initiative is organized by NYC Health + Hospitals, the NYC Test & Trace Corps and Department of Health and Mental Hygiene in coordination with the Department of Education and other City agency partners.