Speed Reads

Solving COVID

Seven states announce bipartisan agreement to expand COVID-19 testing

Seven states are teaming up with the goal of expanding rapid COVID-19 testing.

The governors of Maryland, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Ohio, Virginia, and North Carolina have announced an interstate compact "to expand the use of rapid point-of-care antigen tests" during the coronavirus pandemic. The bipartisan group of governors is in talks to buy 500,000 antigen tests for each state.

"By banding together, the states are demonstrating to private manufacturers that there is significant demand to scale up the production of these tests, which deliver results in 15-20 minutes," the announcement said, touting this as the first such interstate testing agreement during the pandemic.

The compact was negotiated by Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R), who on Tuesday thanked "my fellow governors for signing on to this groundbreaking bipartisan agreement" to "acquire millions of faster tests to help save lives and slow the spread of COVID-19," adding that "we will be working to bring additional states, cities, and local governments on board as this initiative moves forward."