Coronavirus Health

Thursday will be the last day for some Louisville residents to order free at-home COVID-19 test kits through the “Say Yes! COVID Test” program.

The program began in mid-October and allowed residents in 16 selected ZIP codes to receive four COVID-19 test kits via home delivery or pick-up at one of 50 partner locations. The program included people in 40118, 40202, 40203, 40208, 40210, 40211, 40212, 40213, 40214, 40215, 40216, 40218, 40219, 40229, 40258 and 40272.

The ZIP codes were selected based on several data points.

“Those represented areas with higher case counts, some of our lowest vaccination rates and also where a lot of essential workers live,” deputy director of the city’s Department of Public Health Wellness, Connie Mendel said.

Residents are eligible to receive up to four kits per household, which amounts to 8 individual tests total.

Louisville was chosen by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and National Institutes of Health for the program due to the huge impact the Delta variant had on the city.

“Over 114,000 tests have been mailed to individual’s homes, and our partners will be receiving 166,000 tests,” Mendel said. 

There are currently more than 80 partner locations, 50 of which allow for testing kit pick-up for eligible people. They will continue to hand out testing kits until they run out of supplies. 

“Our partners will have tests I would say certainly through next week and potentially the next two to three weeks,” Mendel said. “It’s just really gonna depend on how many each partner ordered and I guess the kind of response we get from the communities.” 

People were encouraged to submit their test results online or through a dedicated smartphone app to earn gift cards.

Official positive case counts were unavailable as those are reported directly to the CDC. The main focus for the city was getting the tests out to people, according to Mendel.

“Our goal is just to make testing more widely available in the community to the people who need it most,” Mendel said.

Since the program was provided by the CDC and NIH, there are currently no plans to relaunch the program.

Breya Jones is the Breaking News Reporter for WFPL.