LOS ANGELES - Grocery chain Kroger announced on Friday that it is adding over 220 coronavirus testing clinics at its stores across the country. The clinics will be available via appointment to both symptomatic and asymptomatic patients.
The company’s healthcare division, Kroger Health, says the announcement comes just in time for the upcoming flu season, which medical experts warn could add extra complications to a health care system already struggling due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
According to a release, since April, the company has facilitated more than 150,000 COVID-19 tests across 19 states.
The initiative is part of the company’s COVIDCare Plus testing program, which aims to provide coronavirus test kits that produce reliable results within 72 hours.
The company says these additional testing clinics will “mirror the self-administered collection process currently utilized at Kroger Health's community testing locations.”
In order to access one of the clinics, Kroger encourages individuals to use a free screening tool to determine if it is necessary for them to take a coronavirus test. The screening tool can be found at krogerhealth.com/clinictesting.
Once an appointment is scheduled, a licensed practitioner will contact the patient. Kroger says designated parking will be offered for patients and most COVID-19 sample collections will be self-administered while the patient remains in their vehicle under the observation of a Kroger Health professional.
When the availability for efficient coronavirus testing was sparse in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, some of the nation’s leading chains and pharmacies stepped up to provide clinics for Americans including Walgreens, CVS and Walmart.
In April, Walgreens announced it would provide COVID-19 testing sites across seven states, and now the company offers sites in all 50 states.
On their website, CVS says it has established more than 1,800 test sites in 33 states and the District of Columbia. The company says it has completed more than one million tests since its first drive-up testing site was established in March.