Seton Hall’s South Orange campus will serve as a coronavirus testing site for Essex County residents and the University community on Thursday, Nov. 19, according to University officials.
The County of Essex will administer COVID-19 saliva tests to Essex County residents and members of the Seton Hall community, University spokesperson Laurie Pine said.
“Seton Hall is pleased to partner with the Village of South Orange and Essex County to serve our community in this time of need,” University President Dr. Joseph Nyre said in a press release on Thursday. “At Seton Hall we have devoted substantial resources to the fight against COVID-19, but it is clear that defeating this virus will take coordination and teamwork.”
The testing will be a drive-in service and administered by Essex County officials.
The county will at least partially utilize the Xavier Hall parking lot to administer tests, according to an email from Seton Hall’s parking services department, prompting the University to close the lot for Thursday.
The lot will reopen at 10 p.m. on Thursday evening, the email said.
Individuals could sign up to receive a test at the University on the Essex County COVID portal, but as of 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday night, there were not any appointments available at Seton Hall.
Essex County has had more COVID-19 cases and deaths than any other county in New Jersey, according to data from the N.J. Department of Health, with 382 new cases reported on Wednesday.
Testing is encouraged for anyone who has not been tested within the last 14 days whether symptomatic or asymptomatic, Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo said.
“Unfortunately, Essex County leads the state in the number of deaths caused by the coronavirus,” DiVincenzo said in a statement. “Our fight against this deadly disease is far from over and we must remain vigilant and aggressive to combat it.”
Anyone taking the saliva test should not eat, drink, smoke or chew gum for 30 minutes before the test is administered.
Testing is free and insurance will not be required.
UPDATE — Nov. 18: Story was updated to reflect the latest Essex County case numbers, the status of appointment availability and information about parking.
Daniel O’Connor can be reached at email@example.com. Find him on Twitter @itsDanOConnor.