One more day of drive through coronavirus testing at UNO

Update: Officials say they will have supplies to get through Thursday

Dave Cohen, WWL First News early edition
April 08, 2020 - 7:29 am

UPDATE: New Orleans officials announced at 2pm today that they would have enough tests to continue the program through Thursday

More than 10,000 COVID-19 tests have been done at drive through testing sites at the Alario Center in Westwego and UNO Lakefront Arena where anyone with symptoms can stay in their car and get tested.  

New Orleans Health Director Dr. Jennifer Avegno says, however, federal officials have told them they are ready to end that pilot program as early as today at UNO.

"The feds are looking to move on to other places," she explained. "After this week they will not be supporting the sites."

She says they have enough tests to get through today for sure, but not tomorrow.  

Dr. Avegno says they will find other ways to keep testing people.

"What will likely happen is that the sites themselves will go away," the health director explained. "They have promised to give us a good number of tests that we can then continue to deploy to our residents."

Details of how that will work are not available yet.

The program has allowed New Orleans outperform testing elsewhere.

"We've tested over 10,000 people... New Orleans leads the testing rate per capita almost anywhere in the world.  I think only Iceland has tested more people."

Jefferson Parish officials say the testing at Alario is going to continue for now.

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