Monday, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee announced more than 23,000 Tennesseans have received a free COVID-19 test at 67 drive-through sites over the past three weekends, as part of Unified-Command Group’s efforts to reduce barriers and widen access to testing for all Tennesseans regardless of symptoms.
“Testing remains one of the most important tools for gaining more information in our fight against COVID-19, and the 23,000 tests we’ve completed over the last three weekends have provided incredibly valuable data,” said Gov. Lee. “We’re grateful to the thousands who came out to receive a test this weekend and we continue to remind Tennesseans: when in doubt, get a test.”
Soldiers and Airmen from the Tennessee National Guard supported Tennessee Department of Health personnel at 16 sites across the state May 2 and 3 where 5,153 Tennesseans received a free COVID-19 test. Eight sites were operated on Saturday with 2,733 individuals tested and another eight sites on Sunday with 2,420 individuals tested. Hamilton county-operated their site both days and tested 1,168 individuals for COVID-19 representing nearly a third of the weekend total.
“Our weekend sites have been equipped to meet the demand for free testing across the state,” said Dr. Lisa Piercey, Tennessee Department of Health Commissioner. “With ample capacity at our county health departments during the week, we continue to encourage Tennesseans to take advantage of free testing at these locations.”
Unified-Command Group, led by Director Stuart McWhorter, is a partnership between Tennessee Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Lisa Piercey, Tennessee’s Adjutant General, Maj. Gen. Jeff Holmes and Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) Director Patrick Sheehan.