Earlier in the month, President Donald Trump vowed that there would soon be a vast network of COVID-19 testing sites set up in the parking lots of big box retailers around the country where people could be tested “very safely, quickly and conveniently” — and the executives of Walmart, Target, CVS, and Walgreens said they would be working to make it happen.
But according to the Washington Post, Trump’s vision has simply not happened. In fact, between these stores, there are only as many of these facilities as you could count on one hand.
“While the four retailers have a combined 26,400 U.S. stores, this vision of a proliferation of coronavirus testing sites has yet to materialize,” reported Elizabeth Dwoskin, Abha Bhattarai, Juliet Eilperin, and Ashley Parker. “Walgreens and CVS have opened one site each, while Walmart last weekend opened two drive-through testing locations near Chicago. Target hasn’t opened any. Rite Aid, which joined the effort later, has opened one drive-through facility in Philadelphia.”
The report continued: “Like much of the nation’s coronavirus response, the burden of organizing and operating these testing sites has fallen to state and local governments. On occasion, they’ve enlisted the help of private industry. But an array of logistical challenges, ranging from a shortage of testing supplies to funding, has meant only a small fraction of Americans can get diagnosed for covid-19 in a way that is routine in South Korea and elsewhere.”
A White House official told the Post that the lack of test kits in the nation overall, combined with the logistics of trying to avoid creating long lines at the facilities, forced the administration to scale back their plans.
You can read more here.