Quick Takes

Want free COVID-19 testing? Federal site launches to help. 

By: - January 27, 2023 1:54 pm

A line of waiting vehicles is seen while a Bluewater Diagnostic Laboratories technician administers a COVID-19 test at Churchill Downs on January 10, 2022 in Louisville. (Photo by Jon Cherry/Getty Images)

Kentuckians can search for free COVID-19 testing sites nearest them thanks to a new website that launched nationwide last week. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launched the site Jan. 24 with a goal of “focusing on communities at a greater risk of being impacted by the pandemic, people who do not have health insurance, and surge testing in state and local jurisdictions.” 

Visit the COVID-19 testing site at https://testinglocator.cdc.gov/Search and search by ZIP code. You can also dictate how far from home you’re willing to go for the free testing. 

The rate of positive COVID-19 tests statewide as of Jan. 23 was 10.27%. That number does not include at-home tests, which means it is likely higher. 

Each Friday, the state updates its community COVID-19 levels. The most recent update showed less red – which represents the most severe levels of infection – on that map. 

“We’re kind of bumping up and down a little bit… month to month but nothing like what we’ve previously lived through,” said Gov. Andy Beshear Thursday. 

Hospitalizations down statewide 

Cabinet for Health and Family Services data shows the number of people hospitalized, in intensive care units and on ventilators with COVID-19 decreased for the past two weeks. 

In the week ending Jan. 23, there were 318 people hospitalized, 55 in ICUs and 27 on ventilators. That’s down from 406 hospitalized in the week of Jan. 16 with 63 in ICUs and 31 on ventilators. 

Still: “I do have to implore people,” Beshear said. “Please get the new booster. I believe that it is safe and effective.” 

The United States Food and Drug Administration says that the vaccines “can help protect against severe illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19.” 

As of Jan. 23, about 39% of Kentucky’s total population had done so. The Kentucky Lantern previously reported that many Kentuckians believe the global pandemic is over as it pertains to their personal lives. 


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Sarah Ladd
Sarah Ladd

Sarah Ladd is a Louisville-based journalist from West Kentucky who's covered everything from crime to higher education. She spent nearly two years on the metro breaking news desk at The Courier Journal. In 2020, she started reporting on the COVID-19 pandemic and has covered health ever since. As the Kentucky Lantern's health reporter, she focuses on mental health, LGBTQ+ issues, children's welfare, COVID-19 and more.