New Jersey authorizes 18,000 pharmacists to conduct COVID-19 tests

More than 18,000 New Jersey pharmacists can now administer COVID-19 tests, bringing the state closer to the amount of testing needed to safely reopen.

A May 13 administrative order from Paul R. Rodríguez, the acting director of the state's division of consumer affairs, determined a temporary yield on legal requirements that usually prevent pharmacists from administering tests without participating in a collaborative practice agreement or protocol with a physician.

Pharmacists are permitted to perform only tests approved or given an emergency use authorization by the FDA. State officials expect testing will be conducted the most at pharmacy locations with drive-thrus.

"With thousands of pharmacists now authorized to administer COVID-19 tests, finding a testing site in New Jersey will be as easy as walking to the corner drug store," said the state's attorney general, Gurbir Grewal, in an announcement on the governor's website.

New Jersey is slated to test at least 20,000 residents per day by the end of May and 25,000 by the end of June.

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