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Itching To Travel? Preflight Coronavirus Tests Are Getting Passengers In The Air : NPR

The Tampa International Airport has started coronavirus testing for passengers with a boarding pass or proof of a reservation for a flight in the near future.

Danny Valentine/Hillsborough County Aviation Authority


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Danny Valentine/Hillsborough County Aviation Authority

The Tampa International Airport has started coronavirus testing for passengers with a boarding pass or proof of a reservation for a flight in the near future.

Danny Valentine/Hillsborough County Aviation Authority

For people who are itching to travel, airlines are working hard to offer reassurance. They’re requiring masks, disinfecting airplane cabins between flights and using hospital-grade HEPA air filtration systems. Airlines are also touting a recent study that shows that modern aircraft ventilation systems help prevent the spread of the coronavirus and suggests the probability of spreading and contracting the coronavirus on even a packed airline flight is low.

Now they’re offering one more thing in hopes of putting travelers’ minds at ease about flying: testing for the coronavirus at the airport, before you board your flight. The tests are allowing some travelers to reschedule and take vacations they had to cancel or postpone months ago.

Matt Battiata and his wife and four kids had to postpone a dream vacation to Hawaii’s lush landscapes and sparkling beaches back in March, when the island state began requiring every traveler to self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival. That essentially shut down tourism there. After all, who would want to fly all the way to Hawaii just to be trapped in their hotel room for two weeks?

But the Battiata family finally landed at Honolulu’s airport last week.

“We’re just happy to be able to come and visit,” Battiata said after presenting proof of the family’s negative coronavirus tests to airport workers on the first day Hawaii reopened to those who test negative for the coronavirus.

“We got a rapid test, it took about 30 minutes, you know, a nasal swab test,” Battiata said, adding that “everybody’s clear, yeah, so we’re very excited.”

Airlines are excited, too, to get paying customers back on their planes, so they’re helping facilitate coronavirus testing for travelers heading to certain destinations, like Hawaii. And some are even offering on-the-spot, rapid response testing at the airport before passengers go through security.

United Airlines was first to announce on-the-spot preflight testing, which it offers only at San Francisco’s airport for Hawaii-bound travelers. For results in 15 minutes, it costs you $250, on top of the airfare. There are also less expensive drive-up or clinic testing options, which provide results usually in less than 48 hours.

United and other airlines have worked with Hawaii public health officials to make sure the tests meet the state’s requirements for accuracy and reliability.

United Airlines was the first to announce on-the-spot preflight testing, which it offers only at San Francisco’s airport for Hawaii-bound travelers.

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United Airlines was the first to announce on-the-spot preflight testing, which it offers only at San Francisco’s

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Broncos assistant coach tests positive for COVID-19, won’t travel with team for Patriots game

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The Denver Broncos will likely have quarterback Drew Lock back in action when they visit the New England Patriots on Sunday, but thanks to the latest in a growing list of COVID-19 cases around the NFL, they will be down at least one assistant coach. A day before the team’s Week 6 showdown with the Pats, which is already delayed a week because of separate COVID issues, the Broncos announced that running backs coach Curtis Modkins has contracted COVID-19 and will not travel with the club for the game.

“Curtis is currently at home in self-isolation and experiencing no symptoms,” the Broncos said in a statement, adding that they learned of Modkins’ positive COVID-19 test early Saturday morning. “We have evaluated close contacts, administered necessary point-of-care testing (no positive COVID-19 results) and implemented additional health and safety measures at UCHealth Training Center.”

NFL Network’s James Palmer reports that Modkins recently learned of a family member who tested positive and immediately notified the Broncos, taking “extremely proactive” measures to follow NFL-NFLPA protocols for COVID cases and isolate from the rest of the team.

The status of Modkins, who oversees a running back unit that’ll be without starter Melvin Gordon (illness) against New England, isn’t expected to affect the Broncos-Patriots game on Sunday. New England had its own COVID-19 issue on Friday, cancelling practice because of an additional positive test, but all indications are that the NFL intends for the game to proceed as (re)scheduled.

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Covid-19 Saliva Tests, Flu Shots To Be Administered At Hackensack Recreation Department on Monday, October 19

HACKENSACK, N.J. — The Hackensack Recreation Department is slated to hold free Covid-19 saliva tests and flu shots on Monday, October 19 from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the site located at 116 Holt Street in Hackensack, Bergen County Executive Jim Tedesco has announced.

The mobile testing is made possible via the Bergen County Regional Community Testing Program, which is available to all county residents thanks to a partnership between the County of Bergen and the Bergen New Bridge Medical Center. Monday’s mobile testing site includes community partners South Hackensack, Moonachie, Teterboro, Rochelle Park, Maywood, River Edge, Bogota, Little Ferry and Lodi. Priority hour for public school staff will be from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m.

Residents can pre-register for their test at a Regional Community Mobile Testing site through an online portal to receive priority processing. To pre-register visit BergenCOVIDTesting.com. Residents who choose to pre-register for testing must bring their mobile device for check-in.

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For the COVID-19 saliva test, residents are asked not to eat, drink, smoke, or chew gum 30 minutes prior to arrival. Identification is necessary; credentials including a driver’s license/ID card, school identification card, social security card, passport, or birth certificate are required. Proof of Bergen County residency is required.

Monday’s testing will be subject to change due to weather conditions. For updates, go to co.bergen.nj.us or County Executive Jim Tedesco’s Facebook page.

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Kamala Harris cancels travel through Sunday after staffer tests positive for COVID-19

Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Kamala D. Harris on Thursday suspended in-person campaigning because two people close to the campaign tested positive for the coronavirus.

She plans to stay off the campaign trail through Sunday.

Neither Ms. Harris nor presidential nominee Joseph R. Biden is believed to be at risk, but the news scrambled plans for the Democratic ticket with less than three weeks to go until Election Day.

Mr. Biden’s campaign said Liz Allen, Ms. Harris’ communications director, and a “non-staff flight crew member” have tested positive for COVID-19.

The campaign also said an administrative staff member for the company that charters Mr. Biden’s plane tested positive Thursday but that the former vice president never came within 50 feet of them and there was no need to self-quarantine.

Ms. Harris said she is not showing symptoms. She tested negative multiple times this week, including on Thursday.

“We wanted to make sure that we were adhering to what has been, I think, a very appropriate and strict level of seriousness around the caution that we are exercising to make sure everyone is safe,” the California senator said at a virtual fundraiser on Thursday.

She also held a virtual event with Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles and Democratic Rep. Alma Adams after the news forced her to cancel several in-person events in North Carolina.

She learned of the other people’s positive tests late Wednesday. Neither she nor Mr. Biden tested positive, according to the campaign.

Mr. Biden and Ms. Harris have been critical of President Trump for conduct they deem dangerous during the pandemic, such as not always wearing masks and holding large rallies.

“Obviously, it’s been in stark contrast to you know who,” Ms. Harris said at the fundraiser.

Mr. Trump announced Oct. 2 that he tested positive for the virus and spent several days at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center as a result. The president has been back on the campaign trail since Monday after his physician said he was no longer at risk of spreading the virus to others.

He wished Ms. Harris and her staff well while campaigning in North Carolina on Thursday.

“We extend our best wishes,” the president said. “Which is more than they did to me, but that’s OK.”

Mr. Biden and Ms. Harris both wished the president well after his diagnosis and the Biden campaign temporarily suspended negative ads.

Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon said neither Ms. Allen nor the crew member on Ms. Harris’s plane had contact with Mr. Biden, Ms. Harris, or any other staffers since testing positive or in the 48 hours before their positive test results.

Ms. O’Malley Dillon said both individuals were on a flight with Ms. Harris on Oct. 8 but that they were all wearing masks and the senator was not within six feet of them for more than 15 minutes.

“Our doctors believe that we were not exposed under CDC guidelines,” Ms. Harris said.

Ms. Harris and Mr. Biden campaigned together in Arizona on

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Harris suspends campaign travel after aide tests positive for coronavirus

WASHINGTON — California Sen. Kamala Harris has suspended her campaign travel through Sunday after two members of her staff and crew tested positive for the coronavirus, her campaign said Thursday.



a person taking a selfie: Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., exits a plane Sept. 28 in Raleigh, N.C.


© Sara D. Davis / Getty Images

Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., exits a plane Sept. 28 in Raleigh, N.C.


The Democratic vice presidential nominee’s communications director, Liz Allen, and a member of her campaign flight crew tested positive, the campaign said in a statement. Neither has been in close contact with Harris in recent days, the campaign said. The statement did not give the condition of either person.

Harris’ husband, Doug Emhoff, will also cancel travel Thursday, but will resume his schedule Friday, as he has had no contact with either Allen or the unnamed crew member, the campaign said.

Harris has been off the campaign trail this week for the Supreme Court confirmation hearings for Judge Amy Coney Barrett. Harris opted to participate remotely from her Senate office for the Judiciary Committee hearings after two Republican members of the panel tested positive for the virus.

Harris joined other Democrats in asking committee Chairman Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., to require testing for senators and staffers before lawmakers conducted the hearings in person. Graham refused.

Harris is not expected to return to her Senate office, a spokesman said. Campaign aides and Capitol Hill staffers are separate by law, and Harris’ Senate employees have been working remotely.

In its statement announcing the positive test results, the campaign detailed every negative test result Harris has had since Oct. 8. The most recent was Wednesday, the campaign said. Allen and the crew member both tested positive late Wednesday, the campaign said.

Harris last flew with Allen and the crew member on Oct. 8, the day after Harris debated Vice President Mike Pence in Salt Lake City. All wore N95 masks on the flight, her campaign said. Harris intends to resume campaign travel Monday.

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, at 77, is at higher risk for serious complications from the coronavirus, and the campaign has implemented rigorous testing and precautionary procedures. Those were amplified after President Trump reported a little over 48 hours after the first presidential debate Sept. 29 that he had tested positive. Trump, 74, was hospitalized for four days with COVID-19 but has since recovered. Several people who work in the White House or were in close proximity to the president also tested positive.

The White House has been uncommunicative about what kind of contact tracing it has done. The Biden campaign said it would conduct contact tracing for Allen and the crew member.

The Biden campaign’s level of disclosure and detail on the test results in Harris’ camp were in contrast with the approach taken by the White House, which has refused to say when Trump last tested negative before his positive result. The refusal makes it impossible to know whether Trump complied with the independent body that oversees presidential debates’ requirement that candidates test negative

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Sen. Kamala Harris Halts Campaign Travel After Staffer Tests Positive for COVID-19

Not today, Satan.

I see what you are trying to do and I rebuke you in the name of our Lord and savior, Robyn Rihanna Fenty.

California Sen. Kamala Harris, Joe Biden’s running mate to take down the beasts from Lovecraft Country that inhabit the White House, has halted campaign travel after two people—a flight crew member and Harris’ communications director, Liz Allen—tested positive for coronavirus.

CNN notes that Harris was not in close contact with either person but that doesn’t mean that she isn’t being cautious, and rightfully so. Not to overplay the importance of her election, but the fate of the world depends on Harris and Biden staying healthy enough to beat white nationalist Thanos. The movie doesn’t work if Tony Stark gets a fever and the chills and needs to lay down and self-isolate for 14 days. Harris was supposed to head to North Carolina on Thursday but that has been postponed, and she’s expected to stay off the travel trail until Monday.

“Neither of these people have had contact with Vice President Biden, Senator Harris or any other staffers since testing positive or in the 48 hours prior to their positive test results,” Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon said in a statement.

“After being with Senator Harris, both individuals attended personal, non-campaign events in the past week. Under our campaign’s strict health protocols, both individuals had to be tested before returning to their work with the campaign from these personal events,” she said. “These protocols help protect the campaign, the staff, and anyone who they may have contact with; the importance of having such protocols—which include testing before resuming duties, regular testing while working in-person, isolation after time off, and masking and distancing while on campaign duties—have been illustrated once again.”

O’Malley Dillon also noted that since Oct. 8, Harris has taken two PCR tests for coronavirus and has tested negative.

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Kamala Harris halts travel amid campaign after staffer tests positive for COVID

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s campaign halted Sen. Kamala Harris’ travel on the campaign trail this week after the running mate’s communications director tested positive for coronavirus, news outlets reported.

The announcement was made after two people, a flight crew member and communications director Liz Allen, contracted COVID-19, CNN reported.

Harris was not in close contact with either individual, Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon told the news outlet in a statement.

After spending time with Harris, both individuals attended “personal, non-campaign” events in the past week, O’Malley Dillon said. They were then required by the campaign to be tested before returning to work, CNN reported.

“Neither of these people have had contact with Vice President Biden, Senator Harris or any other staffers since testing positive or in the 48 hours prior to their positive test results,” O’Malley Dillon said, according to CNN.

O’Malley Dillon added that Harris has taken two tests for COVID-19 since Oct. 8 and has tested negative, the news outlet reported.

The flight crew employee and Allen’s positive test results still forced Harris to cancel her planned trip to North Carolina on Thursday, according to CNN. The Democratic vice presidential candidate will remain off the campaign trail until Monday.

The news from the Biden campaign comes as the Trump administration was rattled by a slew of positive coronavirus cases earlier this month, with Republican President Donald Trump, First Lady Melania Trump and several other in the White House contracting the viral respiratory infection.

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Harris cancels travel after Biden campaign announces positive Covid tests

Sen. Kamala Harris has canceled all campaign travel through this weekend “out of an abundance of caution” after a flight crew member and her communications director tested positive for coronavirus, the Biden campaign announced Thursday.

Harris, the Democratic vice presidential nominee, has tested negative for coronavirus twice over the past week, Biden’s campaign said.

“Senator Harris was not in close contact, as defined by the CDC, with either of these individuals during the two days prior to their positive tests; as such, there is no requirement for quarantine,” Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon said in a statement.

Neither of the individuals who tested positive had contact with Harris or former Vice President Joe Biden “or any other staffers since testing positive or in the 48 hours prior to their positive test results,” O’Malley Dillon said.

In a series of tweets, Harris said that she was not experiencing any symptoms of coronavirus, pledging that she “will be transparent with you about any test results that I do receive.”

“In the meantime, remember: wear a mask, practice social distancing, and wash your hands regularly. It is possible to stop the spread,” she added.

Harris was previously set to campaign in North Carolina on Thursday, traveling to Charlotte and Asheville to mark the beginning of early voting in the key battleground state.

On Friday, the senator was scheduled to travel to Cleveland.

In an interview with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow on Wednesday night, Harris said she would also be in Pennsylvania over the weekend and teased a campaign trip to Texas as well.

She had been off the trail this week as she participated in the confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett, though Harris appeared virtually for each of the hearing’s first three days.

Both the flight crew member, who is not a part of the Biden campaign, and Harris’ communications director Liz Allen had attended personal events not related to the campaign in the past week, according to O’Malley Dillon. As part of the campaign’s health protocols, both were required to be tested before returning to work with the campaign.

Prior to that, both of those who tested positive were last on a flight with Harris on Oct. 8. Both the flight crew member and Allen, as well as Harris, wore an N-95 mask, and Harris was never within six feet of either for longer than 15 minutes, the campaign said.

The campaign is also postponing campaign travel for Harris’ husband Doug Emhoff, though he had no contact with either Allen or the flight crew member. He will return to the trail on Friday.

The two cases tied to the Biden campaign come after President Donald Trump announced he was diagnosed with coronavirus earlier this month amid a larger outbreak that spread throughout the White House, infected his reelection campaign manager and other allies as the campaign entered its critical final weeks.

The Biden campaign has repeatedly sought to contrast its internal health protocols and the precautions

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Harris suspends travel after 2 staffers tests positive for COVID-19

WILMINGTON, Del. — Kamala Harris, the Democratic vice presidential nominee, will suspend in-person events until Monday after two people associated with the campaign tested positive for coronavirus.

Joe Biden’s presidential campaign said Thursday that Biden had no exposure, though he and Harris spent several hours campaigning together in Arizona on Oct. 8. Both have tested negative for COVID-19 multiple times since then.

It’s the Biden campaign’s first major coronavirus scare, after months of careful health procedures that brought mockery from President Donald Trump, even after a White House virus outbreak that included the president and first lady Melania Trump. The Democratic campaign’s cautious reaction underscores again the differences in how the rival camps have approached the pandemic, both in terms of preferred government response and the candidates’ personal protocols.

The travel suspension interrupts the Biden campaign’s aggressive push across a wide battleground map, including North Carolina and Ohio, the next two states Harris was scheduled to visit.

The campaign sees Harris, the first Black woman on a major party presidential ticket, as a key part of their outreach in North Carolina, where increasing Black turnout is key to the Democrats’ hopes of flipping the state from President Donald Trump’s column. She had been scheduled to travel to the state Thursday for events encouraging voters to cast early ballots.

Her Friday trip to Cleveland would have been her first to Ohio as the vice presidential nominee and would have taken her into the metropolitan area with the state’s largest concentration of Black voters.

The senator’s brief hiatus from the trail comes as Trump ramps up his own travel again after he, first lady Melania Trump and several White House staffers contracted the virus.

The Biden campaign told reporters Thursday morning that Harris’ communications director, Liz Allen, and a flight crew member tested positive after a recent campaign trip to the southwest.

Campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon said both individuals tested negative before and after the conclusion of Harris’s travels. Their positive results came in subsequent tests.

“Neither of these individuals had any contact with Vice President Biden, with Sen. Harris or any other staff member since testing positive or in the 48-hour period prior to their positive test results,” O’Malley Dillon said, adding that none of the candidates’ exposure and contact tracing meet the CDC guidelines for quarantining. But O’Malley Dillon said Harris would suspend travel for several days “out of an abundance of caution.”

The campaign also is canceling upcoming travel for Doug Emhoff, Harris’s husband.

Harris followed up in a statement saying that “both the crew member and the staff member were wearing N95 masks at all points they were near me, and our doctors believe that we were not exposed under CDC guidelines.”

She also pledged to be “transparent with you about any test results that I do receive. In the meantime, remember: wear a mask, practice social distancing, and wash your hands regularly. It is possible to stop the spread.”

Harris will continue virtual campaigning, including fundraisers

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Kamala Harris cancels travel after top aide tests positive for COVID-19

Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., has canceled travel through Sunday after two people involved in the campaign tested positive for COVID-19, Joe Biden’s campaign manager, Jen O’Malley Dillon, said in a statement Thursday.

Dillon said the campaign learned of the positive tests, from a non-staff flight crew member and Harris’ communications director Liz Allen, late Wednesday. Dillon said Harris was not in close contact with those two “as defined by the” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention within two days ahead of their positive tests.

Therefore, Dillion said there is no requirement for Harris to quarantine.

“Regardless, out of an abundance of caution and in line with our campaign’s commitment to the highest levels of precaution, we are canceling Senator Harris’s travel through Sunday, October 18th, but she will keep a robust and aggressive schedule of virtual campaign activities to reach voters all across the country during this time,” Dillon said. “She will return to in-person campaigning on Monday, October 19th.”

Neither infected person has had contact with Biden, Harris, or other staffers “since testing positive or in the 48 hours prior to their positive test results,” Dillon added.

“After being with Senator Harris, both individuals attended personal, non-campaign events in the past week,” she said. “Under our campaign’s strict health protocols, both individuals had to be tested before returning to their work with the campaign from these personal events.”

Both people were aboard a flight with Harris last week, though Dillon said Harris was not within six feet for more than 15 minutes with either individual. Both Allen and the crew member tested negative before and after that flight, Dillon said.

Harris’ husband, Doug Emhoff, is having his travel Thursday canceled as well. Dillon said he will return to the trail on Friday.

“From the outset of this pandemic, the Biden-Harris campaign has taken every precaution to limit the spread of COVID-19,” Dillon said. “Today’s exceedingly cautious steps are part of that commitment. “

This article originally appeared on NBCNews.com.

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