CVS Health to Significantly Expand COVID-19 Testing Capabilities

by Katie Lee

Woonsocket, R.I. — CVS Health joined other pharmacy chains and retailers at the White House on April 27, 2020 to announce the next phase in COVID-19 testing. In addition to the large-scale test sites the company has been operating since March, CVS Health will utilize its expansive community presence to bring testing closer to home while maintaining strict safety standards.

“Our industry has been united by the unique role we can play in addressing the pandemic and protecting people’s health,” says Larry J. Merlo, president and CEO, CVS Health. “We all share the same goal, and that’s dramatically increasing the frequency and efficiency of testing so we can slow the spread of the virus and start to responsibly reopen the economy when experts tell us it’s safe.”

Beginning in May, CVS Health will offer self-swab tests to individuals meeting Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) criteria. Testing will be scheduled online and take place at select CVS Pharmacy locations in parking lots or at drive-thru windows; no testing will take place in-store. Employees participating in the test collection process will maintain safety using personal protective equipment and follow sanitization protocols after each test. The company expects to have up to 1,000 locations across the country offering this service by the end of May, with the goal of processing up to 1.5 million tests per month subject to availability of supplies and lab capacity.

CVS Health’s COVID-19 testing strategy is driven by science, but also by the reality that minorities have been disproportionately impacted by the virus. The company has partnered with several organizations, including the National Medical Association, to improve access to testing and necessary care for historically underserved communities. CVS Health is also developing mobile solutions that will allow health care professionals to bring testing capabilities to these communities, and those same services can be utilized for businesses that will begin to reopen in the coming weeks and months.

CVS Health currently operates large-scale COVID-19 rapid test sites in five states, which were opened in a matter of weeks through partnerships with the Department of Health and Human Services and governors in Connecticut, Georgia, Massachusetts, Michigan and Rhode Island. Most of the parking lot sites can accommodate up to 1,000 tests per day, and sites are overseen by licensed health care providers from MinuteClinic, the retail medical clinic inside CVS Pharmacy locations, with assistance from CVS pharmacists and other employees.

More information on steps CVS Health has taken to address the COVID-19 pandemic, including support for health care providers and clinicians facing financial and administrative strain, is available at the company’s frequently updated COVID-19 resource center.




You may also like