BROOKLINE — Town Administrator Mel Kleckner and Health Commissioner Dr. Swannie Jett announce that Brookline residents who are uninsured will have access to free COVID-19 testing if they are displaying symptoms or have been informed they are a close contact of a positive case.
Brookline has been designated as a “medium” risk for COVID-19 infection according to state public health data released Thursday, Nov. 19. The Town’s average daily incidence rate, which the state uses to calculate risk determinations, is currently 10.9 per 100,000 residents over the last 14 days. Residents should be mindful of the increased risk and continue to wear face coverings at all times while in public — indoors and outside — as well as practice social distancing and avoid gatherings.
Members of the Brookline community may get tested at the clinic operated by mPathy LLC in the Department of Public Health building, and those who are uninsured will have their testing expenses covered by the Town.
Residents who are insured and are symptomatic will have their tests billed through their insurance provider.
“Health coverage should not be a barrier to testing, as it’s a core element of the work we’re doing to fight back against this pandemic,” Dr. Jett said. “We’re glad to be able to support residents in need who are experiencing symptoms or who have come into close contact with those who have contracted the virus. Doing so helps keep the entire community safe by enabling us to quickly identify those who are sick and directing them to isolate.”
In order to qualify as a close contact, those seeking tests must show documentation from the state or local Department of Public Health that indicates they have come into contact with a positive case. The Brookline Department of Public Health will email a letter to residents identified as a close contact which can be used to obtain testing for free at the Brookline site.
PCR swab tests are available at the Health Department building, 11 Pierce St., on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Wednesdays and Fridays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Walk-ins are welcome, but appointments can be made by booking online here. Residents may also call 339-201-5516.The testing program will continued through Dec. 31. Beginning Nov. 30, the site will also be open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Mondays.
The cost of testing is $140 for asymptomatic individuals who have not been identified as close contacts of a COVID-positive person.
Free testing is also available through the state’s Stop the Spread initiative. For more information, click here.