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For the First Time, City Recommends All NYers Get Tested for Coronavirus

by Bobby Cuza/New York City/Spectrum News

NEW YORK – Marking a new stage in the fight against COVID-19, city officials are now recommending that all New Yorkers get tested for the virus, not just those with symptoms or risk factors.

It’s the first time since the outbreak began that testing will not be based on priority.

In an advisory issued to health care providers across the city Tuesday, city health officials wrote, “New Yorkers seeking medical care for any reason should be offered COVID-19 diagnostic testing.”

The move coincides with the start of the city’s Test & Trace program.

On Monday, 1,700 new contact tracers began the work of tracking down those who’ve recently tested positive, as well as those they’ve been in close contact with, and encouraging them to self-isolate. The city can provide assistance with basic necessities like food and laundry, and even provide a hotel room if necessary.

Dr. Ted Long, executive director of the Test & Trace Corps, said the team successfully reached out to every new positive case on Monday, the first day of the program. He also addressed concerns that protesters might be spreading new infections.

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