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You don't need a COVID-19 test to help stop the spread of this coronavirus

Hillsborough County is experiencing a test kit supply shortage.

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. — The Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County wants the public to know that you do not need a COVID-19 test to "do what is needed" to help stop the spread of the novel coronavirus and take care of yourself. 

The health department said it is aware many people would like to be tested, but it is unable to do so due to the shortage of supplies.

A COVID-19 test shows if a person is positive or negative. If the virus is not detected at the time of the test, it does not mean you cannot get the novel coronavirus and end up spreading it to others, according to the health department.

"Testing helps create a snapshot of where the virus is in the county. However, there is enough data to show COVID-19 is spreading and to stop it from doing so, everyone must do their part," the health department wrote in a release.

That's why health leaders are urging people who does not need to be tested to do what is needed: stay home.

Other suggested actions: 

  • Don't go to work, school, or public areas
  • Avoid using public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis
  • Be sure to separate or keep a six-foot distance between other people or animals inside your home
  • If you are experiencing symptoms stay in a specific "sick room" if possible, and away from other people in your home.
  • Clean high-touch surfaces often

Hillsborough County announced Thursday the Raymond James Stadium test site is set to close Friday, a day earlier than anticipated. With the short supply in test kits across the country, the site will close once it has "exhausted" its supply of 900 kits. 

The health department noted once supplies become available, more people will be tested in Hillsborough.

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