Putnam County will be distributing thousands of rapid COVID-19 tests to food pantries, shelters, libraries, senior citizen centers and houses of worship over the coming days. County Executive MaryEllen Odell says this is an effort to stem the spread of the Omicron variant and keep schools and businesses open. Putnam County entered into a public/private partnership with Ambulnz to set up testing centers in Carmel and Philipstown, but not everyone can easily reach those sites. The county received about 4400 rapid antigen test kits from New York state in its first shipment. More are expected. The Paladin Center and Philipstown Rec sites opened on December 27th and tested more than 4500 people and 17-percent were positive for COVID.