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March 20, 2020

Philly opens drive-thru coronavirus testing site for residents older than 50

The site doesn't require a doctor's referral but has other restrictions

Illness Coronavirus
Coronavirus Public Drive-thru Testing Philly Citizens Bank Park Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

A drive-thru coronavirus testing site in Philadelphia is opening outside Citizens Bank Park. The site is open to the public and will not require people to have a doctor's referral. But it is restricting access to people older than 50 with COVID-19 symptoms and health care providers.

A new drive-thru coronavirus testing site in Philadelphia will not require people to have received a doctor's referral, a necessity at many other regional sites. 

But the public testing site, set to open Friday outside Citizens Bank Park, will still include several restrictions designed to cater to the people most vulnerable to severe COVID-19 symptoms.

RELATED STORY: How – and where – to get tested for coronavirus in Pennsylvania, New Jersey

The site will be restricted to people who are over 50 years old and displaying coronavirus symptoms – fever, cough and shortness of breath. It also will be open to health care workers displaying symptoms.

Due to supply and staffing issues, anyone who does not meet those criteria will be turned away. The city health department will expand these criteria if testing capacity expands. 

The site will be open from 2-6 p.m. daily as long as supplies last. The federal government is coordinating the payment and delivery of tests.

To access the site, people must arrive in four-wheel, closed-top vehicles. To enter, drivers should head south on Seventh Street and make a right onto Pattison Avenue, where the site will be located. 

No walk-ins will be permitted. 

Additionally, people should bring a government identification card, insurance card and, if applicable, a health care facility identification card. Those items are not required, but health officials say they will ease processing and data collection.

Eligible health care workers include hospital and doctors office staffers with direct patient contact, nursing home staffers with direct patient contact, EMS personnel and home health care staffers with direct patient contact. 

The site is being staffed by Philadelphia city employees and volunteers from the city's Medical Reserve Corps. Supplies are being provided by the federal government. 

The city is partnering with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency to open the site. 

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