WOLCOTT, Conn. (WTNH) – Connecticut residents are finally getting at-home rapid COVID-19 test kits promised by the state. It comes after shipment delays postponed distribution plans in municipalities across the state. Wolcott was one of the first to hand out the kits Saturday afternoon.
Cars started lining up around 9:00 a.m. in the parking lot of Frisbie Elementary School in Wolcott, hours before first responders were going to start handing out rapid COVID-19 test kits. The line eventually wrapping around the building and into the street.
Walcott Fire Chief Kyle Dunn said his vehicle was filled to the brim with the kits, including the front passenger’s seat. They passed out all of them in just an hour.
Dean Joseph, who lives in Wolcott, got the last two boxes.
I feel good. My family will be more secure, they could get tested at home,” Joseph said.
Wolcott received 1,100 kits, 900 less than the state was originally supposed to provide the town as a part of an effort to meeting testing demand across Connecticut.
In total the state’s effort includes 3 million at-home test kits and 6 million masks. 500,000 of the kits were expected to arrive this past Thursday for municipalities to hand out to residents. Shipment delays postponed those plans until Friday morning, when the state received a majority of the number of kits expected this week from a different supplier. The rest will arrive soon.
Wolcott Police Chief Edward Stephens said first responders worked together to set up a plan for distribution Saturday afternoon. To be eligible you just needed proof of residency.
“We wanted to get them in the hands of the citizens as soon as we could,” Chief Stephens said.
The line of cars got so long, they started an hour early to avoid traffic issues on local roads.
“Demand is here. You know people want to get tested, want to see whether they have COVID or not,” Chief Stephens said.
However, Gina Ashe, like many others, was too late.
“It is what it is. You can’t get them, you can’t get them,” Ashe said.
Not all were as lucky as Joseph, who got to the school just in time.
“It is a Happy New Year for me,” Joseph said.
If you look around and do your research, it’s possible to find rapid tests at local stores in our region.
For information on when you’re municipality is handing out the kits from the state, click here.