State has plans to get COVID-19 test results faster for people with symptoms

Florida's Department of Emergency Management has plans to implement new measures at Orange County testing sites in an effort to get people with symptoms their results sooner. 

Gov. Ron DeSantis announcing in a press conference Thursday that the state will be making changes to testing sites in Orange, Broward, and Miami-Dade counties. The plan is to have separate lanes at testing sites specifically for people with symptoms to get those individuals their results faster. The governor says the results would be within 72 hours. 

"The problem with that is the lab turnaround is getting backed up," said Gov. DeSantis. "We're going to contract with some of the companies that do the self-swab, send it in and get a quicker turnaround time." 

This comes after the state has seen delays in getting test results. Some people tell FOX 35 News they had waited close to two weeks for results after getting tested at the Orange County Convention Center.

Last week, the Florida State Emergency Operations Center told FOX 35 News the state was using a lab BioReference Laboratories to process COVID-19 tests, but that lab was experiencing nationwide delays with results taking on average six days. The state has since switched to Genetworx, which they say will prevent further delays. Now, the state is taking another step to get results sooner. 

"If you're symptomatic obviously you need to know whether you have coronavirus or you have something else, but the symptomatic is where we want to get the turnaround time as quickly as possible," Gov. DeSantis said. 

Gov. DeSantis says the Department of Emergency Management hopes to announce the plans next week.