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MV athletes get COVID-19 testing on-site with Neighborhood Health Center partnership

COVID testing of athletes at MVHS

The Mount Vernon City School District, in partnership with the Mount Vernon Neighborhood Health Center, tested 115 athletes for COVID-19 on Wednesday, February 17th at The Mount Vernon High School (MVHS). The district and the center will continue weekly testing performed on-site.

Throughout this first day of testing, students trickled into the student cafeteria, registered for the test, and took the nose swab diagnostic test.

“It’s really convenient here to do it weekly without any additional cost,” said Antwone, a senior athlete. “It’s really good for us to keep everyone safe and ourselves safe. And, to keep the Athletic Department and the athletes going in trying times like this.”

The current testing is for athletes on the following teams: Cheerleading, boys and girls track, boys and girls basketball, and boys swimming as well as the football team, which is participating in off-season workouts with a start date of March 8 for their regular season.

The COVID testing arose as an extension of the partnership the school district has with the health center, where the center provides school-based health centers and a nurse practitioner at both MVHS and Edward Williams School for preventative care. In those centers, services such as annual physical exams, employment physical exams, required vaccinations (not COVID-19), blood testing, among other services, are provided. Students may also see a nutritionist and a social worker, who visit the offices regularly. The offices also provide referrals for dental, ophthalmology and x-ray needs to the Neighborhood Health Center facility at 107 W. Fourth St., Mount Vernon.

Athletes of all teams will be tested as their seasons draw closer. “Fall 2” sports begin March 8 with football, volleyball, cheerleading, and girls swimming. “Spring sports” will begin approximately April 19 with baseball, softball, boys tennis, and outdoor track.

“We are very happy that the school district has partnered with us in the COVID testing, which is very important for our community and for our kids,” said Neighborhood Health Center Chief Operating Officer Joseph Gonzalez. “We look forward to a continued partnership.”