Coronavirus: US to ship millions of COVID-19 tests in push to reopen schools

Coronavirus: Millions of COVID-19 tests to ship in US to push schools to reopen

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump outlined plans Monday to disperse 150 million previously promised rapid coronavirus tests, urging governors to use the supplies to prioritize school reopenings for students in kindergarten through 12th grade.

The tests, first promoted by the White House in August, will be distributed to states based on population density and can be dispersed at each governor’s discretion, CNN reported.

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White House officials said during a Monday news conference in the Rose Garden that 100 million tests, manufactured by Abbott Laboratories, will be distributed to governors over the next several weeks with 6.5 million tests slated for delivery this week, the Chicago Tribune reported.

Trump said the first two-thirds of the available tests “will be given to states and territories to support efforts to reopen their economies and schools immediately and (as) fast as they can,” CNN reported.

The final 50 million tests, Trump said, will be used “to protect the most vulnerable communities,” including nursing homes, assisted living facilities, hospice care, historically Black colleges and tribal nation colleges, the network reported.

According to the Tribune, Trump’s announcement comes as the United States averages more than 40,000 new COVID-19 infections per day.

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Photo illustration of testing vials marked with 'COVID-19' and a syringe.
Photo illustration of testing vials marked with 'COVID-19' and a syringe. (Avishek Das/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)