FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Florida is expanding testing for the deadly coronavirus and trying to make the process easier for residents.
On Friday, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced that two walk-up community testing sites are opening in Broward County.
The sites will be at the Urban League of Broward County, located at 560 NW 27th Avenue in Fort Lauderdale, and Mitchell Moore Park, located at 901 NW 10th Street in Pompano Beach.
"Any individual experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, doesn't matter how old you are, doesn't matter where you traveled. Six weeks ago, everyone was talking about China and all this. Doesn't matter. If you have COVID-19 symptoms, you can walk up to the site to receive a test," DeSantis said.
Residents can also call 954-412-7300 to make an appointment to get tested at the walk-up sites.
"It's exciting to be able to continue moving the ball forward on testing," DeSantis said, adding that the two Broward County locations are planning to test at least 200 people per day, to start.
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County officials said the Urban League testing site will open on Saturday, April 18, and will be open Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day.
It's unclear when the Mitchell Moore Park testing site will open.
New COVID-18 Walk-Up Testing Site at the Urban League of Broward will open Saturday, April 18th. pic.twitter.com/XC28LyJ5Qr— Broward Govt Affairs (@BrowardSLI) April 17, 2020
According to the latest numbers from the Florida Department of Health, there are 24,119 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state, including 686 deaths.
In a piece of encouraging news, the governor said that, as of Thursday night, there were 774 COVID-19 patients in intensive care beds at medical facilities across the state. That's the lowest number since April 9.
The entire state of Florida is currently under a sweeping "stay at home" order until April 30.
DeSantis said on Friday that because a majority of COVID-19 cases are in Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties, reopening that part of the state may be different than the rest of Florida.
"Maybe southeast Florida, next phase, looks a little different. I'm gonna work with them to figure out what they think makes the most sense in terms of this next phase," DeSantis said. "I think the mayor here, the mayor in Miami-Dade, I think they do believe we need to get to a next phase. Maybe southeast Florida looks a little different than the rest of the state."
For the latest information about the coronavirus in Florida, click here.