New Hampshire to close state-run coronavirus testing sites

NASHUA, NH — As positive coronavirus infections plummet again in New Hampshire, health officials decided to close state-run COVID-19 testing sites on March 15.

The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services opened seven sites in Belmont, Claremont, Keene, Lincoln, Manchester, Nashua and Newington during the fall surge of COVID-19 infections. The state also opened them due to a nationwide shortage of rapid antigen tests. With the decrease in positive infections, the demand for tests has also decreased.

Gov. Chris Sununu said the closure of state-run sites marked “an important milestone” in the two-year pandemic.

“Since the very beginning of this pandemic, the state has worked hard to open up access to testing,” he said. “Over the past two years, members of our National Guard, volunteers, local emergency medical services, nurses and doctors have helped set up our state-run testing sites, and we don’t I can thank them enough for their tireless work.”

Tests, however, are still available at state liquor stores as well as online. Free tests are also always available. There are also 90 other places in the state where residents can be tested for the coronavirus.

On Tuesday, the state reported 66 new positive infections with less than 1,000 active cases.

Two years and a week ago, the state reported its first positive coronavirus test result. Since then nearly 300,000 people have contracted the virus with around 1% of all cases, 2,408, succumbing to the infection. Most of the deaths – 91.1% – were in people aged 60 or over. Only five people 29 or younger have died in New Hampshire. About 1.24% of all infections required hospitalization.