Coronavirus

Coronavirus Testing Platform Verily Halts Appointments

Coronavirus Testing Platform Halts Appointments

After reaching its full volume on its inaugural day, an Alphabet-run site to screen individuals for the coronavirus is no longer taking appointments. The Verily healthcare unit made the site available on Sunday (March 15) in collaboration with American government officials, Bloomberg reported.

A message posted on the site on Monday (March 16), said, “Unfortunately, we are unable to schedule more appointments at this time.” The website reportedly indicated that it would have the ability to grow the testing effort in “the near future.” The tests were first made available to those who live in two California counties.

“All appointments require a call-back confirmation to schedule an appointment. If someone were to fill out the questionnaire overnight, they would go into a queue to be called the next day should they qualify,” noted a spokesperson for Verily, per Bloomberg.

The spokesperson continued, “In these first few days of this pilot, we expect appointment availability to be limited as we stand up operations and that testing capacity will increase in the days to come.”

As previously reported, the portal enables people who have signs of the coronavirus or those who were close to an infected individual to find out whether they should be tested and where they can obtain the testing. Tests are not broadly available as of yet.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai said in a statement on Sunday (March 15), “We’re partnering with the U.S. government in developing a website dedicated to COVID-19 education, prevention and local resources nationwide. This includes best practices on prevention, links to authoritative information from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and helpful tips and tools from Google for individuals, teachers and businesses.”

According to a past report, the online screening would be available to residents of the U.S. who are at least 18 years old, have an account with Google and are willing to share health information with the tech company.

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