Cities, towns pivot plans as they await at-home COVID-19 tests to arrive to the state

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Conn. (WTNH) – The state has confirmed about 15,000 of the 3 million at-home COVID-19 tests have now arrived in New Britain. They’ll be distributed to Foodshare, Veterans Affairs, and through the State Department of Housing.

As for the rest of the tests, they’re still stuck in limbo, and cities and towns are now pivoting their plans. They’re sitting tight until they get tests.

A Meriden police officer was posted by the green on Thursday, letting city residents know the at-home rapid tests wouldn’t be given out as planned. The delayed shipment of the tests canceled distribution events all across the state, with city and town leaders working to adjust and quickly. They’re now sitting tight, waiting on official word about when these tests will arrive.

“We’ve got to be able to pivot. We’re pivoting to something different. We were handing out kits, we don’t have them yet,” said Rick Fontana, Emergency Operations Director of New Haven.

The video below is from a previous newscast on Dec. 30

“Guidance has been changing, plans have been changing, distribution has been changing. There’s always been constant movement. It’s been a fluid situation,” said Mayor Kevin Scarpati of Meriden.

Cities and towns are ready to respond once they get the tests and plans are being put into place.

“We were pretty reluctant with planning any type of event until we physically had the test kits in hand. We didn’t want to be in a situation where we had people that were very anxious about getting the test kit and we don’t have it,” said New Britain Mayor Erin Stewart.

In total, the state will be distributing 3 million at-home rapid tests as well as 6 million N95 masks. As numbers surge, residents are being encouraged to take measures to protect themselves. That includes getting vaccinated and boosted, wearing a mask, and practicing social distancing.               

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