The Department of Health wants to reassure the public that it is aware that the
current active COVID-19 case count is higher than the data being collected via the daily public health testing efforts. Home testing is not included in the VIDOH-published reports.
The purpose of epidemiology surveillance across the nation as well as internationally is to capture as many test results as possible in the area being surveyed, and most importantly, the purpose of the surveillance is to identify trends. Since the pandemic began, VIDOH has provided the public with ongoing reports based on data collected from its test sites combined with data shared by providers who were also testing. This combined data has provided a good sampling of what is going on in the community.
VIDOH testing for COVID-19 is offered to the public for free for several reasons. From a surveillance point of view, testing allows the VIDOH to capture critical information that it uses to determine when the VIDOH should recommend new courses of action to prevent further spread and hospitalizations.
Examples of these actions can include policies related to social distancing or mask-wearing in public places until the active case trend demonstrates a marked decrease. Additionally, from a patient care perspective, the public health testing program allows positive cases to
access care that includes prescriptions for antiviral medications to lessen the severity of the illness and possibly prevent hospitalization. Those who test positive utilizing home test kits need a confirmation test performed by the VIDOH to qualify for these antiviral treatments.
The best course of protection from COVID-19 remains vaccination and boosting. Now that the bi-valent vaccine is readily available, Virgin Islanders are urged to make sure their vaccines are up to date. For more information, please call:
- On St. Croix: Community Health at 340-718-1311, extension 3760 or 3796, and come in to receive the bivalent vaccine at #35 Castle Coakley Unit 5, formerly known as the Old Caribe Home Center Building, Monday through Thursday 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. No appointment is needed for either the COVID-19 or FLU vaccine.
- On St. Thomas: vaccines are available in the Community Health Clinic on the second floor of the Schneider Regional Medical Center. Monday–Thursday, 9:00 a.m. to 12 noon and 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Anyone wanting a FLU vaccine on St. Thomas is asked to call 340-774-7477 to arrange an appointment.
- On St. John – Vaccines are available during the Wednesday weekly testing event in the VIPA gravel lot from 12:00 noon to 3:00 p.m.
COVID-19 and FLU vaccines for children aged six months or older in both districts are available through the Maternal Child Health Clinics (MCH). Please make an appointment by calling 340-244-0016 on St. Croix, 777-8804 ext. 2600 on St. Thomas, and 340-776-6400 on St. John.