Westport, Weston giving out at-home COVID testing kits

Photo of Katrina Koerting
A take-home COVID-19 testing kit is displayed on the shelf of a Manhattan drugstore on December 22, 2021 in New York City.

A take-home COVID-19 testing kit is displayed on the shelf of a Manhattan drugstore on December 22, 2021 in New York City.

Spencer Platt / Getty Images

Westport and Weston will be distributing at-home testing kits and N95 masks as part of the statewide effort to fight the spread of COVID-19.

Two testing kits will be given per vehicle. They will be distributed on a first come, first served basis, both first selectwomen said.

“Because of the scarcity of these kits, I am asking the residents of our state to please take only the kits that you need for your immediate family so that we can distribute as many as possible to help flatten the omicron curve,” Connecticut Public Health Commissioner Dr. Manisha Juthani said, adding people should limit gathering sizes during the holiday week.

Westport is set to receive 3,420 tests from the state and will distribute them to Westport residents at Staples High School at 1 p.m. on Thursday.

Westport residents looking to get one of the testing kits should enter Staples through the main entrance on North Avenue. People should remain in their vehicles and be prepared to show their driver’s license to the attendant.

Weston is set to receive 1,350 at-home testing kits from the state, which will be distributed to residents from 10 to 11:30 a.m. on Friday at the Weston Intermediate School parking circle. People must bring proof of Weston residency to receive a kit.

“The State of Connecticut has communicated to the Town of Weston that it is planning to distribute kits to school age children after the first of the year,” said Weston First Selectwoman Samantha Nestor. “In addition, test kits are expected to be provided to the general public in January from federal resources.”

The state announced earlier this week it would distribute a 3 million at-home testing kits and 6 million N95 masks to municipalities.

“As early as next week, the state of Connecticut will also be distributing N95 masks that will be available to the public,” Westport First Selectwoman Jennifer Tooker said. “State officials stress that details of the distribution of the N95 masks are still being finalized and are subject to change.”

If a self-test is positive, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends the person to stay home or isolate for five days if asymptomatic, followed by five days of wearing a mask when around others. Another PCR test is not needed. Given the highly infectious nature of the omicron variant, it is most important to wear a mask both in public spaces and when interacting in close contact with individuals outside of your household, according to the latest CDC guidelines.

“A negative test result means that the test did not detect the virus and you may not have an infection, but it does not rule out infection,” Nestor said. “Repeating the test within a few days, with at least 24-hours between tests, will increase confidence that you are not infected.”

Families with children attending the Westport Public Schools are asked to report positive student COVID-19 cases using the district’s reporting voicemail or email.

Parents of Weston students should email District Nursing Supervisor Sheryl Zulkeski at sherylzulkeski@westonps.org if the student tests positive during break. Parents should contact the nurse at their child's particular school when school is in session.

It is not necessary to report positive results from at-home testing to the Westport Weston Health District, however people who test positive should tell close contacts.

“We urge our residents to remain cautious and safe to protect yourselves, your families, and your neighbors. Thank you for your commitment to the health and well-being of the Westport Community,” Tooker said.