Drive-thru assessment centers being set up in Nashville for COVID-19 testing

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Posted at 5:42 AM, Mar 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-20 07:58:13-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — The Nashville COVID-19 Task Force continues to combat the new coronavirus outbreak in Davidson County, the state's hardest-hit county. Now, it's creating two new Community Assessment Centers for people to get tested for the virus.

Nissan Stadium is one of the sites for testing. The other is the parking lot of the old Kmart on Murfreesboro Road.

Emergency personnel say they still have some work to do before these centers open because there are a lot of moving parts. They want to make sure staffers have everything they need when they start letting people drive through.

So far, the plan is to have a call center for people to describe their symptoms and travel history to streamline the process. They will then let you know if you need go to a testing location.

“You stay in your vehicle, you'll get tested, swabbed, and you'll get a date, time or when to expect your results,” said Nashville Fire Department Chief William Swann. “We'll tell you to go and self-isolate until you get your test results back, whether it's 48 or 72 hours.”

If you're test is negative, then you're good to go. However, if it's positive, you'll have to be quarantined for two weeks and then get re-tested.

Right now, it’s not known when these centers will open. However, we've been told it will be soon.


See all our coronavirus coverage here


What is COVID-19 (a.k.a. the new coronavirus?)

According to the World Health Organization, coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases. Examples include the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV)and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans. COVID-19 stands for "Coronavirus disease 2019," which is when this strain of the coronavirus was discovered.

What are the symptoms?

The CDC says patients confirmed to have the 2019-nCoV reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness with:

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

Or at least two of the following symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Repeated shaking with chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell

At this time, the CDC believes symptoms could appear as soon as two days after exposure, or as long as 14 days.


The CDC is recommending "common sense" measures such as:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.