Free COV-19 Testing On and Near Capitol Hill & Looking forward to Phase II Reopening
By Larry Janezich
On Monday, DC will begin free testing for COV-19 at select Fire Stations. One of those is in Hill East and another is near H Street, NE.
On Tuesday, free walkup testing is available for residents from 4:00pm – 8:00pm at Engine 8 Fire Station, 1520 C Street, SE, a half block from the Pretzel Bakery.
On Wednesday, free walkup testing is available from 4:00pm – 8:00pm at Engine 10 Fire Station, 1342 Florida Avenue, NE, a short distance from the east end of H Street before it intersects the starburst.
Last Friday, Mayor Bowser and city officials briefed on the status of the city’s response to the Covid-19 health crisis and discussed criteria for moving to Phase II of the reopening, and what that reopening would look like.
Under Phase II, gatherings would increase from the current limit of 10 to up to 50, some indoor restaurant dining with social distancing would be permitted (but no buffets or bars), and expansion of non-essential retail, personal care services and recreation facilities – all with social distancing.
Dr. LaQuandra Nesbitt, Director of the DC Department of Health, says it will take three weeks to assess the effects of Phase I reopening, and the earliest the DOH could consider making a recommendation re Phase II is June 19th.
As of today – Sunday – the city had marked 6 days of sustained decline in community spread. A 14 day decline is the first benchmark which has to be reached before the DC Health Department will consider making a recommendation to reopen.
Benchmarks also have to be achieved in a low transmission rate, a low positivity rate, sufficient health care capacity, and continued tracing capacity. A setback in any of these categories could trigger an “intervention” and possibly delay moving to Phase II.
Obviously, the lack of social distancing which occurred during the past 8 days of demonstrations in the city against police brutality are a concern.
You can see a list of other fire stations offering free testing, track the daily progress on DC Health Metrics for Phase II, and the Community Spread Rate under the NEWS tab – (click the like to the June 5 situational report) here: https://coronavirus.dc.gov/