NEW HANOVER COUNTY, N.C. -- County officials are decreasing restrictions and increasing coronavirus testing.
Julia Olson-Boseman, New Hanover County Commissioner Chair, said county restrictions lasting until April 29 at 5 p.m. will not be extended.
"While letting our county order expire means there's no longer restrictions on beaches, hotels, motels, and short term rentals in New Hanover County, each municipality will be able to make their own decisions and restrictions with the guidance of public health and hospital experts," said Olson-Boseman.
New Hanover County will be directly in line with Governor Cooper's stay-at-home order that lasts through May 8.
Along with gardens, the county landfill, and basketball courts reopening, a drive-thru testing site is also opening next to the Schwartz Center.
The county plans to test 2,400 residents over the next month. That's about one percent of the population.
"It will give us more information about meaningful data, and the virus," said Lisa Brown, Public Health Preparedness Coordinator. "And provide our community with an option for no-cost testing that is not provided elsewhere. And it will provide data to help us know if we need to change our mitigation efforts."
Those needing assistance can call the Coronavirus Call Center at 910-798-6800. People who have been screened and appear to have symptoms will receive a testing appointment starting on Wednesday.
Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo announced a separate anonymous donation of 10,000 antibody kits. The county and city will work together to deploy these tests over the coming weeks in a targeted way - first to those who have a lab-confirmed case of COVID-19, and then to a broader section of the community.