UPDATED: April 3, 2020 at 1:35 p.m.
Hoboken has announced that it will be opening COVID-19 testing to all residents, thanks to an influx of new testing materials.
“I’m pleased to share that we will now be able to acquire enough COVID-19 testing kits to open up the existing Riverside Medical Center testing center to all Hoboken residents eligible for testing,” said Mayor Ravi Bhalla, in a statement last night. “While testing centers are open in Hudson County and across the State, with the expected surge in cases, it’s important for Hoboken residents with COVID-19 symptoms to have more convenient access to testing right here in Hoboken.”
I’m pleased to share we will now be able to acquire enough COVID-19 tests to open up the Riverside testing center to all Hob residents. W/ an expected surge in cases, it’s important for residents w/ symptoms to have more access to testing right here in Hob. More details to come pic.twitter.com/dqYsh7bxhx
— Ravinder S. Bhalla (@RaviBhalla) April 2, 2020
Previously, testing for Coronavirus was only available for patients of Riverside Medical Group with up-to-date physicals. Given the rate and volume of the virus’ spread in our region, the new testing materials will allow for a wider scope of testing.
Residents with symptoms of COVID-19 must call 201-420-5621 in advance to schedule an appointment. No walk-in testing will be permitted without an appointment.
The calls will be fielded at City Hall by Hoboken’s Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) beginning today for a soft-launch between the hours of 1 pm and 4 pm, and this Saturday and Sunday between the hours of 9 am and 5 pm. Starting Monday, April 6, the call center will be open to schedule appointments from 9 am until 5 pm, Monday through Saturday. Riverside’s testing center—located on 14th Street between Jefferson Street and Madison Street—will be open Monday through Saturday.
“I’m very glad that in partnership with Riverside Medical, we are now opening up testing to Hoboken residents,” said Mayor Bhalla. “Any Hoboken resident who is symptomatic now has the peace of mind that testing is now available. I’m extremely grateful to Riverside Medical for working with us on making this available to Hoboken, and especially to Dr. Gaurang Brahmbhatt for expanding his services to help protect our residents.”
“The City Council is happy to see additional testing being made available to Hoboken residents,” said Council President Jen Giattino. “We all have learned the importance of additional testing to slowing down this virus. Thank you to Riverside Medical Group for working with Mayor Bhalla and the City Council.”
The testing center will be open to Hoboken residents only, with proof of a utility bill or driver’s license required. Anyone without symptoms will not be eligible for testing. The test will be free for all Hoboken residents. If a resident’s insurance does not pay the cost of the test, the City of Hoboken will cover the cost, which is approximately $50. Once an appointment is secured, the resident can either have the testing done through a drive-through with a vehicle, or through a walk-in station.
“I also extend my sincere thanks to Sgt. Montanez from our Office of Emergency Management and the Hoboken CERT Team for staffing our call center, Director Leo Pellegrini, Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop, Caleb Stratton and Brian Aloia from my staff for helping facilitate the logistics of the testing center, and to the Hoboken City Council for authorizing the purchase of testing kits for Hoboken residents,” said Mayor Bhalla.