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CVS opens drive-thru coronavirus test site in Northampton, one of 9 in state

  • CVS plans to open 1,000 drive-thru testing operations across the country by the end of the month, the company says. SUBMITTED PHOTO/CVS HEALTH

Staff Writer
Published: 5/16/2020 1:46:39 PM

NORTHAMPTON — The CVS Pharmacy on King Street began providing drive-thru COVID-19 tests Friday — one of nine new test sites opened by the company across the state this past week.

The new Pioneer Valley testing sites, at 366 King St. in Northampton, as well as another at 928 Riverdale St. in West Springfield, will use self-swab tests for the coronavirus and is part of CVS Health’s goal to open 1,000 testing locations across the country by the end of May, according to a statement from the company. 

“By working with a wide range of partners like CVS and our colleagues in the health care community, Massachusetts has significantly increased COVID-19 testing and is a national leader in per-capita testing,” Gov. Charlie Baker said in the statement. “We are grateful to CVS for their partnership on this major additional testing expansion at a number of sites across the Commonwealth, especially because we recognize the importance of continued and accessible testing as we move toward a responsible, phased reopening of our economy.”

Tests will be available for people who meet Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria in addition to age guidelines, the statement said. Patients must register in advance at CVS.com to schedule an appointment.

Those receiving a test will be required to stay in their cars and will be given a test kit as well as instructions; a CVS Pharmacy employee will watch the self-swab to make sure it’s completed properly, the statement said. Completed tests are then sent to an independent third-party lab for processing, with results available in approximately three days.

CVS Health’s goal is to process up to 1.5 million COVID-19 tests per month as part of its nationwide testing strategy announced April 27 at the White House, the statement said. These nine Massachusetts sites are part of a first rollout that includes 51 test sites in Arizona, Connecticut, Florida, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania.

“While the large-scale test sites we’ve been operating since early April have proven successful, this new approach allows us to utilize our presence in communities across the country and bring testing closer to home,” said Larry J. Merlo, president and CEO of CVS Health, in the statement.

Testing will not take place inside any retail locations.

Michael Connors can be reached at mconnors@gazettenet.com. 


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