ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — As people continue to gather in large groups to protest the death of George Floyd, the risk of catching the coronavirus also hasn’t let up.
The Anne Arundel County Department of Health is recommending COVID-19 testing for anyone who has gone to a recent protest.READ MORE: Baltimore Police: Man Killed In Shooting Friday Night
The department said it is providing daily drive-through testing to county residents at no cost. They added tests are given on a first-come, first-served basis.
Supplies are limited, so they said appointments are preferred.
To make an appointment, call the COVID-19 Health Line at 410-222-7256. You do not need to be insured for testing. If you are insured, bring your insurance card.
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“Everyone at a crowded gathering is at risk of COVID-19,” said County Health Officer Dr. Nilesh Kalyanaraman.
The department said you don’t have to be symptomatic to get tested. Anyone who starts showing symptoms should be tested within 48 hours, they said.READ MORE: Baltimore County Public Schools To Allow Inner County Sporting Events Beginning Next Friday
“People who have been in large gatherings may not have symptoms, but could still have the virus and be spreading it. They should also get tested as soon as possible,” the department said.
“COVID-19 has a major impact on minorities, the elderly, those with chronic health conditions and our community’s most vulnerable. Getting tested helps protect others and is the right thing to do,” said Dr. Kalyanaraman.
They are reminding protestors to wear face masks and eye protection to help prevent injuries and to avoid touching your face as much as possible. They also encouraged protestors to not yell and shout, as they say yelling spreads droplets.
“Choose signs, drums or noise makers instead,” they said.
The health officials suggest sticking with a “small buddy group” of 10 people or fewer to keep unknown contacts low, then space the group about six feet away from others if you can.
And, as an extra precaution, carry hand sanitizer and bandages- while staying hydrated with water.
They again ask anyone if they think they are sick to stay home and protest virtually or send signs and banners through friends.MORE NEWS: Annapolis Files Lawsuit Against Big Oil Companies For The Costs Of Climate Change