Fisher Island: America's richest zipcode buys coronavirus tests for all its multi-millionaire residents
Government data suggests that between five and nine confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported in the Florida enclave
Despite the fact that only one percent of Florida has been tested for coronavirus, due to a lack of availability of tests, a luxury private island in the state that can only be accessed by boat or helicopter, has purchased thousands of coronavirus tests for its private residents and workers.
The area in question is Fisher Island, located off Miami, which is believed to be the wealthiest zip code (33109) in the country - average earning is $2.5 million per year. According to Bloomberg, the island houses about 800 families, all of whom own multimillion-dollar condos. Memberships to the Fisher Island Club cost about $250,000.
Government data suggests that between five and nine confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported on Fisher Island, which boasts of Hasbro Toys CEO Alan Hassenfeld, Yard House founder Steele Platt, tennis players Caroline Wozniacki and Boris Becker, former NBA player David Lee and Victoria Secret model Karolina Kurkova among its residents. Oprah Winfrey and Mel Brooks also reportedly owned homes on the island.
The tests that have been purchased for the island residents are antibody tests -- done through a blood prick -- and which determine if one is infected by detecting antibodies for the virus in a person's body.
Sissy DeMaria, the spokeswoman for Fisher Island, told Daily Mail that residents wanted to get the paid tests and also make them available for the workers who maintain and patrol the island. The island officials are collaborating with the University of Miami health system to establish disease surveillance and testing system.
"To further minimize spread on the densely populated island with half of the residents over the age of 60 and at high risk, Fisher Island asked UM Health Clinic to procure antibody testing for all employees and residents. Fisher Island is funding the cost of the testing which is underway now," she said.
However, that doesn't mean that the residents of the island are taking it easy on social distancing and other regulations laid out in place by the CDC regarding the virus.
"Fisher Island Club remains vigilant and continues to actively promote social distancing measures, is encouraging the use of face masks, has closed all Club amenities including golf/tennis/marina/restaurant (takeout only) facilities, and has restricted Island access to only essential personnel and visitors, in addition to all other steps recommended by the CDC, the State of Florida and Miami Dade County Executive Orders," DeMaria said in a statement.
The testing will be done at a UHealth clinic on the island. Follow-up contact tracing, for those who test positive for COVID-19, will be completed this week. "This is what the Fisher Island residents wanted. Our physicians ordered it for them, they paid for it themselves," UHealth spokeswoman Lisa Worley told Miami Herald.
It is unclear as to how many people have already gotten the tests administered to them. However, an anonymous source familiar with the testing process told Daily Mail that tests were offered to several Miami-Dade police officers who work there. Results were made available within 15 minutes.