Drive-thru COVID-19 testing coming to Orange County Convention Center

The National Guard has arrived in Orange County to help with coronavirus testing.

Once the drive-thru testing site at the Orange County Convention Center is activated, people will have to meet certain criteria. Testing will focus on two main groups of people: healthcare workers and senior citizens 65+ who are symptomatic. The testing that will be done will require a doctor’s referral. 

As soon as this weekend, the COVID-19 testing site could be up and running. It will be drive-thru only. There will be no testing for pedestrians or bikers.

The Florida National Guard was hard at work on Thursday putting everything in place.

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Governor Ron DeSantis said there is a historic demand for medical supplies causing a shortage. He said right now they’re working on solutions to make things go faster and is asking for patience. 


“It’s not going to be done overnight,” he said. “There’s a national backlog. We think they’re going to move to higher throughput testing, so that potentially could speed it back up, but I just want people to understand the lay of the land here and the options.”

DeSantis said testing samples were originally sent to the CDC And it was taking a week for people to get their test results back. 

The Governor said samples taken at sites like these will be refrigerated and sent to a private lab.

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He said testing centers throughout the state like Orlando, Jacksonville and Miami will receive about 2,500 test kits capable of taking 4,000 swabs. He said it will take about eight minutes for workers to take samples from folks in each vehicle.

FOX 35 is in communication with health officials to find out when the drive-thru testing sites will be activated. Officials want the public to know that they should not show up until they are ready.