Governor Doug Ducey today announced that the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS), in partnership with healthcare partners across the state, are joining forces to launch the Arizona Testing Blitz with the goal of increasing COVID-19 testing statewide. The Arizona Testing Blitz aims to test 10,000-20,000 Arizonans for COVID-19 every Saturday for three consecutive weeks, beginning Saturday, May 2, 2020.
“Arizona has placed an emphasis on ramping up testing, but we need more,” Governor Ducey said. “As our healthcare partners develop a more reliable supply of testing materials, we’re working together to take testing availability to the next level. The Arizona Testing Blitz is just one step of many that will expand access to testing for Arizonans and provide us with better data to develop Arizona specific solutions and re-energize our economy.”
As part of the Arizona Testing Blitz, drive-through or onsite testing will be available at various locations across the state. Arizonans can find the nearest testing location and hours of operation as well as pre-register by visiting azhealth.gov/TestingBlitz. Testing will be available to anyone who thinks they have been exposed to and could be infected with COVID-19 and will be based on criteria set by each testing site.
“We know that rapidly identifying cases, conducting case follow-up, and performing contact tracing will help slow the transmission of COVID-19 in our communities,” said Dr. Cara Christ, ADHS director. “Success in these areas requires an increase in our testing capacity, and the Arizona Testing Blitz will help allow those who want to be tested, get tested. We’re appreciative of our participating partners who will provide additional testing for Arizonans over the next few weeks.”
On Friday, April 24, ADHS invited partners to participate in this statewide, coordinated event. To date, groups including Banner Health and Walgreens have answered the call and additional partners are expected to join. Other partners who want to participate in the Arizona Testing Blitz can contact HEOC@azdhs.gov.
ADHS continues to work with healthcare partners and commercial and clinical laboratories to expand testing capacity in Arizona. ADHS has partnered to provide additional funding to laboratories, remove restrictions on testing criteria for those with adequate testing supplies and personal protective equipment, and distribute rapid testing machines and specimen collection kits to partners.
The Governor’s Office and ADHS are actively monitoring COVID-19 spread throughout Arizona. As of today, all 15 Arizona counties have confirmed cases with a combined total of 6,716 cases across the state. Commercial labs, hospital labs, and the Arizona State Public Health Laboratory continue to provide diagnostic testing and have performed 66,543 tests to date.
For more information about Arizona’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak, visit azhealth.gov/COVID-19.