Responding to a request from area hospitals, Bucks County recently issued a disaster emergency declaration that empowered officials to more quickly buy hundreds of thousands of COVID-19 rapid test kits.
The tests will be distributed to county residents for free, the county said.
As the highly contagious omicron variant of the virus continues to spur a dramatic increase in demand for the tests, the county hopes the new test kits will relieve some of the pressure hospital emergency rooms and pharmacies are experiencing.
The county expects the 300,000 tests to arrive in shipments of 100,000 at a time over the next three weeks, said county spokesman, James O’Malley, in an email. The first batch, he said, is expected later this week.
Distribution of the tests is being managed by the county’s emergency management and health departments, O’Malley said. Sites are being planned in upper, central and lower parts of Bucks. More information will be available when the tests arrive and the locations are ready to open, he said.