A health worker handles a coronavirus swab test at a drive-thru testing center for COVID-19 at Lehman College on March 28, 2020 in the Bronx, New York City.
John Moore | Getty Images
A new drive-through mobile testing site is opening on Monday in the Northeast Bronx in an effort to combat the spread of the coronavirus, New York officials announced on Sunday.
Drive-through centers have been opening around the country in an attempt to provide quicker and safer testing to people as state and local officials grapple with a shortage of tests in the U.S.
“Our main strategy to slow the spread of this virus has been to increase testing and reduce density in every community across the state,” Cuomo said in a statement.
“Co-Op City in the Bronx is home to a high number of vulnerable New Yorkers, and locating a new drive-through facility in this area will help protect those residents and give them a safer place to test for COVID-19,” he said.
The mobile testing center will be located in the parking lot of the Bay Plaza AMC Theater at 2210 Bartow Ave and will prioritize testing for higher risk individuals. The site is near the largest public housing complex in the country that houses many older adults who are generally more susceptible to severe illness from the virus.
President Donald Trump has vowed that states and retail stores like Walmart, Target and CVS will open drive-through test sites, although few sites are up and running at those retail locations across the U.S.
At least 19 states have opened some mobile testing sites, most of which are located outside of hospitals.
New York has several test centers, including one in New Rochelle, an epicenter of the outbreak when the virus first cropped up in the state earlier this month. Other sites are located in Jones Beach State Park in Nassau County, Suffolk and Rockland Counties and Staten Island in New York City.
There are now 59,513 confirmed cases in New York and at least 965 people have died. More than half of the confirmed cases are in New York City.
“This testing site is important for the health and safety of those residing in co-op city as well as residents in neighboring communities and will be a huge benefit to the Bronx,” said Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie. “Many seniors reside here and they are among the most vulnerable to this terrible virus.”