MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. – After closing for the weekend, the long lines have returned at the Hard Rock Stadium COVID-19 testing site.
It's one of two state-run locations now offering rapid testing with same-day results.
But it's not for everyone.
People wishing to receive the rapid test must be between the ages of 5 and 17, be 65 or older, or if any other age, be exhibiting symptoms of the virus.
Large turnout this morning as testing resumes @FLSERT #COVID19 Test Site @HardRockStadium. New antigen testing is for ages 5-17 & 65+ regardless of symptoms. Also included in this group are those 18-64 WITH symptoms. Self-swab testing available for ages 18-64 without symptoms.— Florida Association of Public Information Officers (@FloridaPIOs) August 5, 2020
Drivers lined up before dawn Wednesday outside Hard Rock Stadium for the first day of rapid testing that provides results in up to 15 minutes.
“Everybody says I’m high risk. I need to get tested,” Eric Berger said.
Berger is one of the many who did get a test before this new offering, considering he’s over the age of 65 with underlying conditions.
But while getting the test was not an issue, he said getting the results was.
Four weeks later, Berger is still waiting.
“If you’re somebody who’s symptomatic who doesn’t get your results back in seven days, that is not helpful,” Gov. Ron DeSantis said at a news conference earlier this week.
That lag time led the Florida governor to announce this potential game changer on Monday.
Rapid testing will also now be available at Marlins Park.
“Total for 1,250 tests. We’re going to be able to get real time data back of the percent testing positive,” DeSantis said.
The change will lead to better data, which could also lead to improved contact tracing and more peace of mind for potential patients, like Berger.
“LabCorps, through my doctor, and I’m still waiting,” he said. “I would just like to know where I stand.”