CVS Health is uniquely positioned to play a vital role in helping support both local communities and the overall health care system in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic. Our ability to help coordinate the availability of rapid COVID-19 testing will bolster states’ efforts to manage the spread of the virus and provide people with on-the-spot test results.

CVS Health has joined forces with state governments in Georgia, Rhode Island, Connecticut and Massachusetts to help increase access to rapid COVID-19 testing.

CVS Health’s testing station in Lowell can accommodate up to 1,000 tests per day, officials said. Results ate tabulated on-site so quarantines or treatments can be set up “as appropriate.”

CVS officials said rapid testing will be available to eligible individuals who meet criteria established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in addition to state residency and age guidelines.

When testing does come to Connecticut, Patients will need to pre-register in advance online at CVS.com in order to schedule a same-day time slot for testing, officials said.

CVS Health began operating drive-through rapid COVID-19 testing sites, for eligible individuals, starting in Georgia and Rhode Island on April 6, 2020, and expanding into Massachusetts on Tuesday, April 7.

  • The testing, will not take place at CVS Pharmacy or MinuteClinic locations, but will be held in large parking lots identified in conjunction with local state officials that are easily accessible and able to accommodate multiple lanes of cars at one time.
  • MinuteClinic providers, including Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants, will be on-site to oversee the testing.
  • Testing will be conducted using the new Abbot ID NOW™ COVID-19 test. This test recently received emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the fastest available molecular point-of-care test for the detection of COVID-19.
  • Rapid COVID-19 testing will enable patients to receive results on-site so they can properly quarantine or seek appropriate treatment as needed.

Testing is currently available at no charge to the public and the drive-through testing sites will be open seven days a week.

Rapid COVID-19 testing will be available to eligible individuals who meet criteria established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in addition to state residency and age guidelines. Patients will need to pre-register in advance on-line at CVS.com in order to schedule a same-day time slot to be tested.

For more information and to register for a test, please visit CVS.com.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Why is CVS Health participating in these testing locations?

The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented public health crisis in our country. As a result, all health care personnel are being called to action to help prevent the spread of the virus and help treat patients. CVS Health is uniquely positioned to play a vital role in helping support both local communities and the overall health care system in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic. Our ability to help coordinate the availability of rapid COVID-19 drive-through testing will bolster states’ efforts to manage the spread of the virus and provide people with on-the-spot test results.

How many testing locations will there be and what are the hours of operation?

As of right now, there are three sites planned to go live: one each in Georgia, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. More sites in other states may be added in April and May.

How does the process work?

Rapid COVID-19 testing will be available to eligible individuals who meet criteria established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in addition to state residency and age guidelines. Patients will need to pre-register in advance on-line at CVS.com in order to schedule a same-day time slot to be tested.

When the patient arrives at the testing site for their appointment, the patient will collect a sample of nasal secretions using a self-administered nasal swab, while they remain in their vehicle. The patient will then be directed to a waiting area in their vehicle, to await the test results.

The sample will be processed using the Abbott ID NOW™ COVID-19 test, which will deliver positive results in as little as five minutes and negative results in as little as 13 minutes. Once the test result is available, a health care professional will locate the patient in their vehicle to provide their test results, which will enable patients to receive results on-site along with a treatment plan and direction on appropriate actions to take related to quarantine and exposure tracing.

How long will the process take per patient? How long will it take to get the results?

The process will take approximately 30 minutes from the collection of the swab to the delivery of the results.

What role will the local government and Abbott play?

We are partnering with the federal government to support this effort. In addition, in each of these states, we are working with state government officials to secure the appropriate sites for the drive-through testing. The state is also providing security, PPE (personal protective equipment) supplies for the team administering the tests, and on the ground logistics.

We are using the ID NOW™ platform manufactured by Abbott Laboratories and their newly FDA approved ID NOW COVID-19 test to facilitate the rapid testing on-site.

How many people are involved at each testing site? How many tests will be conducted each day?

MinuteClinic providers will be overseeing the on-site testing process on site. The goal is to conduct up to 1,000 tests per location per day.

What are you doing to ensure the safety of the people taking the tests?

Each health care provider will be using appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), which will be refreshed in accordance to the guidelines established by the CDC.

In addition, all individuals with testing appointments are required to stay in their personal vehicle while at the test site and throughout the duration of the testing process.

How many testing stations will be there be in each parking lot?

Each site will have up to five testing stations, and each station will have multiple Abbott ID NOW™ molecular testing platforms. The goal is to be able to process and deliver results for up to 1,000 tests per day at each site.

How were sites selected?

The company is applying the significant learnings gathered from its COVID-19 testing site opened in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts on March 19, to help maximize the efficiency and safety at these new sites. As a result, large public parking lots in locations such as at the Twin River Casino in Lincoln, Rhode Island and the Georgia Tech campus in Atlanta, have been identified by local government officials as being easily accessible and able to accommodate the flow of traffic and the space required for testing.

Will the tests be offered in the stores, MinuteClinic or HealthHUB locations?

No, there will be no testing inside any CVS Pharmacy store, MinuteClinic or HealthHUB.

Will walk-up testing be allowed for those who don’t have cars?

No, for the safety of patients and health care providers on site, we are currently limiting testing to drive-through testing only.

Can anyone drive up and get a test?

No, patients will need to pre-register and verify their eligibility for testing. Once they have done so, the patient will be provided with an appointment window online.

To learn more and register for a test, please visit CVS.com.

Connecticut coronavirus drive-through testing

In Connecticut Lawrence and Memorial Hospital in New London has opened a coronavirus drive-though testing center. People can get tested at this location if they have been referred by a doctor and have an appointment.

With similar conditions, Hartford Hospital is also offering drive-through testing. 11 more testing locations throughout Connecticut have been approved and will open in coming days.

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