Annapolis, MD (Arundel.News & AAFA)- Getting tested for COVID just got  easier. Health officials in Anne Arundel County are rolling out a new partnership with public libraries to provide free rapid COVID self testing kits at various community hubs.  Beginning this week, each public library in Anne Arundel County will distribute the test kits in an effort to slow the spread of community transmission. 

"Access to COVID-19 testing is about to change in the county," said County Health Officer Dr. Nilesh Kalyanaraman. "People with COVID symptoms or who had possible exposure can test at home for free when it’s convenient. Making tests available in communities around the county helps to ensure equitable access to testing and helps slow the spread of COVID." 

Other community centers like vaccine clinics, health screening facilities, baby and food pantries will also participate in the health department's kit distribution program. 

"While we continue to see vaccinations increase, providing free and easy access at the community level will help us slow the spread of COVID as winter approaches," says County Executive Steuart Pittman.

According to a release from the county, to date, Anne Arundel is the only public library system in the state giving out rapid test kits. 

 “At their core, libraries are about access,” said Library CEO Skip Auld. “These test kits address a critical need for many in our community that we are proud to address."

The kits that come with instructions, will be limited to one per person per day. Agencies and organizations in Anne Arundel County or Annapolis who want to offer COVID testing kits should contact the Department of Health at 410-222-7256.

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