RI to broaden virus tests, by appointment only

A sign points to a coronavirus testing center set up at the Rhode Island College campus by the Rhode Island National Guard on March 31, 2020. Photo by Steve Klamkin WPRO News


Broader testing for coronavirus in Rhode Island is to begin Wednesday by appointment only at sites set up at three college campuses in the state.

State leaders said on Tuesday that drive-through testing sites set up by the Rhode Island National Guard at Rhode Island College in Providence, Community College of Rhode Island in Warwick and the University of Rhode Island in Kingston, but are reserved for high priority subjects who have been medically pre-cleared.

“Expect lines, we’ll do the very best we can to get you in and out as we can,” said Gov. Gina Raimondo. She expects to ratchet up testing to about 1,000 per day by the end of the week.

“Secondly, do not show up without an appointment. You can’t just drive up and be tested. The way to get an appointment to be tested is to call your primary provider”

Raimondo and state health Director Dr. Nicole Alexander-Scott said medical personnel will initially have priority for testing, which will expand more broadly in the coming days and weeks.