MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. (WDVM) — Last week Montgomery County began distributing rapid tests at libraries & on Friday began handing out N95 masks to the community as well.
County Executive March Elrich says the county plans to distribute millions of N95 masks to residents, but he, along with residents, are disappointed with the supply of rapid tests.
“In the immediate sense, we’re worried about not being able to have enough test kits after the next couple of weeks,” said Elrich. “Because if our supplies really cut, then we’ll be waiting to see what the federal government does.”
” I assumed they were out of everything because it wasn’t a long line at all, so I’m delighted to have a new kind of mask, which is supposed to be very safe,” said Montgomery County resident Beth Greenfield. “And we could have gotten rid of this thing two years ago if everybody had worn masks.”
During the pandemic, libraries have taken on a different role. Still, White Oak’s library manager says it’s the library’s job to be the one local government institution that touches every resident. She also says this is just another way to serve their community.
“This seems like a good fit. We’re good at organizing, people know where we are, we have the capacity here to do it,” said Kathy Meizne, Library Manager at White Oak Library. “And it’s been a pretty gratifying experience.”
Since the rapid tests have been begun being distributed at libraries, nearly 800,000 have been given away so far. Residents can pick up 4 N95 masks per person at any one of the 19 county libraries. Supplies are limited, and the masks will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.