Communities to Pilot Small-Scale COVID-19 Websites as Pharmacies Prepare Testing

Pharmacies across the country also taking necessary steps to help facilitate COVID-19 testing and to keep patients safe.

A small-scale website dedicated to California’s patients with coronavirus (COVID-19) will be launched in the upcoming weeks, aiming to serve the broader population “over time,” according to Google’s parent company, Alphabet.1

Google said in a prepared statement that they do not plan to launch a national scale website anytime soon, which President Donald Trump referenced in a press conference last week.1

“Our aspiration is for the triage tool to be used much more broadly over time,” said Carolyn Wang, a spokesperson for the Alphabet subsidiary, Verily, in a statement to The Mercury News. “Initially, we’re linking it with several sites in the Bay Area to test and iterate, and collaborating closely with organizations like Quest Diagnostics and Labcorp who are also working on additional approaches to making testing more accessible and expedient in other areas.”1

Verily is helping to establish testing sites in the Bay Area in collaboration with the California Governor’s office, federal, state, and local public health authorities, according to the company. Additionally, an online tool will be piloted to increase risk screening and testing for people at high risk of COVID-19.2

Starting today, Californians will be able to take an online COVID-19 screener survey through Project Baseline. Those who meet eligibility and requirements for testing will be sent to mobile testing sites based on capacity, where they will complete a nasal swab test. Once tested, individuals will be informed of their COVID-19 test results within a few days.2

Many pharmacies across the country have taken the necessary steps to help facilitate COVID-19 testing and to keep patients safe. For example, CVS announced in a press release that they “expect testing will take place in secure areas of parking lots at select stores—not inside—and individuals being tested will not have to leave their cars,” as they work with the administration and other partners to further address the pandemic.3

Walmart has shared its preventive measures to keep their stores clean and stocked, as many items are in high demand due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Target CEO Brian Cornell stated in a press release that the company has set up a forum to share information and take questions 24/7, in addition to limiting the number of key items per purchase for each guest.4,5

REFERENCES

  • Fung, Brian. Google says it’s not publishing a national-scale coronavirus site anytime soon after Trump announcement. The Mercury News.https://www.mercurynews.com/2020/03/13/google-says-its-not-publishing-a-national-scale-coronavirus-site-anytime-soon-after-trump-announcement/. Updated March 15, 2020. Accessed March 16, 2020.
  • Verily collaborates with CA Governor’s office, federal and local public health authorities on COVID-19. Verily. https://verily.com/stories/verily-collaborates-with-ca-governor-s-office-federal-and-local-public-health-authorities-on-covid-19/. Published March 15, 2020. Accessed March 16, 2020.
  • CVS Health to assist with COVID-19 testing. CVS Health. https://cvshealth.com/newsroom/press-releases/cvs-health-assist-covid-19-testing. Published March 13, 2020. Accessed March 16, 2020.
  • The latest on Walmart’s response to the coronavirus. Walmart. https://corporate.walmart.com/newsroom/2020/03/10/the-latest-on-walmarts-response-to-the-coronavirus. Published March 10, 2020. Accessed March 16, 2020.
  • A note to our guests about the coronavirus from CEO Brian Cornell. A Bullseye View- Target.https://corporate.target.com/article/2020/03/target-coronavirus-update. Published March 10, 2020. Accessed March 16, 2020.