Within hours of offering free at-home COVID-19 rapid test kits on Friday, Arlington County libraries ran out.
All seven open library locations were offering tests — 360 tests in total, across all branches — but all were claimed by 12:10 p.m.
As of 12:10 on Friday all Library locations are out of stock of COVID-19 test kits.
Please check back next week for updates on availability. https://t.co/rncyK7mFmg
— Arlington VA Pub Lib (@ArlingtonVALib) December 10, 2021
Demand was higher than expected, Arlington Public Library Deputy Director Anne Gable tells ARLnow, and people lined up at library doors to get the tests. The number of tests sent by the Virginia Department of Health was based on previous responses at other libraries in the Commonwealth, she notes.
Each branch received a different number of tests.
“It was proportional to the user base of the locations,” writes Gable. “Meaning, the more heavily used locations got more tests and the less used locations got fewer tests.”
More test kits are expected to be available sometime this week and staff will make sure more will be offered this time around.
Some residents were upset with the lack of tests.
@ARLnowDOTcom a pretty disappointed family of five came in after me. It'd probably not on the libraries, but it'd be good to know how we got here.
— Ben D'Avanzo (@BenDAvanzo) December 10, 2021
Meanwhile, Fairfax County Libraries received 20,000 COVID-19 rapid tests and all branches were still stocked as of Friday afternoon.
We received 20,000 COVID-19 rapid antigen tests from @VDHgov yesterday. All branches are stocked as of Friday afternoon, but call to confirm availability before you arrive. Experiencing symptoms? use our contactless curbside pickup service. More info: https://t.co/SSzQ5J4kDJ pic.twitter.com/ISWddMwMqc
— Fairfax Library (@fairfaxlibrary) December 10, 2021
Arlington’s director of emergency management took to social media to remind residents that if they are in need of a COVID-19 test more immediately, there are three free county testing sites open daily.
Due to overwhelming demand, we have already run out of at home test kits offered at our library location. If you are in need of a COVID test, you can visit one of @ArlingtonVA's free testing sites, open daily 9a to 7p: https://t.co/pwfAM857St https://t.co/eJPX1bhHHv
— Aaron Miller (@AaronLMiller) December 10, 2021
Library hours remain limited until Jan. 3, when seven out of eight branches will fully reopen for the first time in nearly two years.
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