Atlantic County Freeholder at Large Caren Fitzpatrick.

NORTHFIELD – Atlantic County Freeholder-at-large Caren Fitzpatrick today called on Atlantic County government to expand its testing for COVID-19 to include asymptomatic individuals as well as workers and inmates at the county jail.

“The social distancing efforts of Atlantic County residents have kept our infection rate down, which gives us the capacity to test more residents for COVID-19,”  Fitzpatrick said in a release. “Now that the curve has been flattened, county government needs to expand its testing population so that more businesses can reopen.”

Currently, members of the public wishing to be tested for COVID-19 by the county must be symptomatic and have a doctor’s prescription. Fitzpatrick, a Democrat who is running to maintain her seat on the Board of Chosen Freeholders, is calling on county government to remove these requirements while still prioritizing symptomatic residents as well as first responders and front-line workers.

“We need to expand testing at the jail now that we have the additional capacity to do so,” she said.

Finally, Fitzpatrick is encouraging the county to partner with pharmacies, such as CVS, to expand its testing capacity beyond county government test sites. Starting this week, CVS locations in Brigantine and Pleasantville will offer tests to asymptomatic individuals without requiring a prescription, she said.

Nanette LoBiondo Galloway

Award winning journalist covering news, events and people of Atlantic County for more than 20 years.