NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Officials with Walgreens say they are working to expand COVID-19 testing to locations in Texas and a half dozen other states.
In all, there will be 15 new testing locations. Walgreens is working with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to pinpoint hot spots — areas with escalating rates of coronavirus cases — where the drive-thru services will be offered.
Pharmacists will oversee the self-administration of the tests in dedicated spaces outside the Walgreens stores.
Ultimately, the pharmacy store chain says it hopes to be able to test some 3,000 people per day at the additional sites. They say those numbers are possible because workers will be using a new coronavirus test that delivers positive results in as little as five minutes and negative results within 13 minutes.
“Opening our first drive-thru testing location last month has allowed us to quickly learn and develop an efficient and scalable process,” Walgreens president Richard Ashworth said in a statement.
In addition to Texas, new drive-thru testing locations will be set up in Arizona, Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana and Tennessee.
While the exact cities and locations of the new testing sites have not been confirmed, Walgreens officials say they expect the new drive-thru spots to be “activated” later this week.
Testing will be available at no cost to eligible individuals who meet certain CDC criteria. The patients — who will have to register in advance — will be directed to testing locations via an online assessment tool that will be available on walgreens.com and on the Walgreens mobile app.