Texas is expanding the COVID-19 Rapid Testing Program for front line workers at small businesses.
Gov. Greg Abbott (R) and the Texas Division of Emergency Management announced Friday a plan to dedicate 1 million BinaxNow Rapid Tests to the program.
"The small business rapid testing program is protecting the safety of small business owners, their employees, and Texas consumers as we continue to combat COVID-19," said Abbott, in a statement Friday. "By expanding this effective strategy, it will help us further detect and mitigate this virus so we can keep Texas safely open for business. Thank you to our participating Chamber of Commerce organizations for continuing to work with the State of Texas to help protect our communities and small businesses."
The COVID-19 Small Business Rapid Testing Program launched in December as a pilot program and has helped small businesses throughout the state conduct rapid tests on employees to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the state said in a statement.
The TDEM will provide testing supplies to chambers of commerce who will then provide them to small businesses participating in the program. Those tests can then be administered to employees who choose to participate.
Officials said the testing program was developed "using the framework of the COVID-19 Rapid Testing Pilot Program for Texas school systems, implemented by the Texas Education Agency (TEA) and TDEM in October, that provides access to rapid testing for Texas teachers, students, and staff in participating school systems."
Chamber of Commerce organizations that wish to participate in the program will receive instructions for registering for the program directly from TDEM, or they may visit https://tdem.texas.gov/chambertesting/ for further information.
Small businesses interested in participating in the program should contact their local Chamber of Commerce for more information.