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CVS Health opening drive-through coronavirus testing sites in Georgia and Rhode Island

CVS Health opening drive-through coronavirus testing sites in Georgia and Rhode Island
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CVS Health on Monday announced that it is opening drive-through COVID-19 testing sites in Georgia and Rhode Island that will provide on-the-spot results to up to 1,000 individuals each day. 

The testing sites will be located in Atlanta, Ga., and Lincoln, R.I., and will require that patients pre-register online in order to schedule a testing time slot, the health care company said in a news release. The company noted that individuals must meet criteria established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state residency and age guidelines in order to qualify for a test. The test is free of charge. 

"Today marks a giant leap forward in our efforts to combat this virus," Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo (D) said in a statement. "Thanks to the partnership and generosity of CVS Health, we will be able to double our testing capacity and provide on-the-spot results to thousands of Rhode Islanders each day."

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CVS Health, which opened its first COVID-19 testing site in Massachusetts in March, said that the new testing sites would be held in large parking lots that are able to accommodate multiple lanes of cars. The tests can deliver positive results within five minutes and negative results in just more than 10 minutes, the company added.

"Our providers will be able to test large numbers of people in these states and make real-time decisions about treatment and appropriate next steps," Troyen Brennan, chief medical officer and executive vice president of CVS Health, said. 

The expansion of drive-through testing comes as the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the U.S. continues to rapidly increase and as health officials continue to voice concerns over a lack of widespread testing. As of Monday morning, the country had reported more than 330,000 confirmed cases of the virus and roughly 9,650 deaths caused by it, according to a Johns Hopkins University database.

Georgia has reported more than 6,700 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 219 deaths. Rhode Island's confirmed 922 cases of the virus and 25 deaths related to it.