New Rochelle gets drive-thru coronavirus testing

New York Post

New York’s first coronavirus drive-through testing center opened Friday morning in New Rochelle — the Westchester County town with the highest cluster of COVID-19 cases in the United States.

“This is drive-thru testing — something I didn’t hear of last week, but we’re doing this week,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said.

“Drive-through testing means people in this community can call a telephone number, make an appointment, and they can come to be tested and literally drive through the testing facilities.”

The set-up includes six drive-through lanes to handle 200 cars a day, Cuomo said. That’s about 15 minutes per car, he said.

The medical staff will come to the car, perform two tests per person and then send the swabs to BioReference Laboratories, the research lab in the state charged with processing.

“It’s not only faster and easier, it’s also smarter because you’re not exposing people to a person who may be positive,” Cuomo said.

“Up until now, if someone thinks they are positive, they might walk into a hospital. They walk into a hospital, they’re now exposing people in an emergency room, they’re exposing staff, etc. So its actually safer to keep them in their car,” he said.

The facility is prioritizing New Rochelle residents but has the capacity for other people who live in Westchester, Cuomo said.

The site is also prioritizing the elderly and those with compromised immune systems —those most vulnerable to the disease, the governor said.

Tests are by appointment only and can be arranged by calling 1-888-364-3065.

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