More drive-thru coronavirus test sites are about to open in Broward County.
They are set to begin testing in Weston as early as Thursday and in Pembroke Pines by Friday.
Testing will be limited only to individuals who meet the current Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, which have been broadened as the virus has continued to spread:
-Older adults and people who have severe underlying chronic medical conditions who have fever, cough or any type of respiratory distress.
-Any people — including healthcare workers — who within 14 days of symptom onset had contact with a suspected or confirmed coronavirus patient.
-Any people with history of travel from an affected area or an area with community spread.
In addition, Cleveland Clinic Florida said it has started scheduling appointments for drive-thru testing in Weston, and will begin testing patients with scheduled appointments on Thursday. Testing will take place at Cleveland Clinic Weston’s Krupa Center, which is located at 3250 Meridian Parkway, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Potential patients should call the Cleveland Clinic Florida appointment center at (954) 659-5951 in order to be scheduled for a test. A nurse will screen callers and will determine whether the caller meets the federal testing criteria.
A five-lane mobile coronavirus test site, to be staffed in part by 100 people from the Florida National Guard’s Medical Task Force, should open in CB Smith Park’s park-and-ride lot by Friday.
Memorial Healthcare System, which will operate the drive-thru in partnership with the National Guard and the Florida Department of Health, will begin testing on a limited basis for healthcare workers, first responders and people 65 and older who show symptoms. Gov. Ron DeSantis said Wednesday that the site will begin with 1,700 collection swabs.
“We want to get more swabs, and as soon as we do, we’ll be able to expand who we test,” DeSantis said. Initially, the tests will be processed at Memorial so that people can get results within hours. As the testing expands, samples will be sent out for processing and results, which could take a few days.
Memorial has not yet established its hours of operation, and appointments will be needed.
Broward has the most cases in Florida, with 80 as of Wednesday evening. Half of the eight deaths announced in the state as of Wednesday evening have also occurred in the county.