Alphabet’s Verily launches coronavirus testing website for Bay Area

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SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – Google’s sister company Verily has launched a website for some people in the Bay Area to determine their eligibility for a coronavirus testing program.

Verily, a subsidiary of Alphabet and sister company to Google, said the screening is limited for now to residents in Santa Clara County and San Mateo County.

The online tool allows people residing in the two counties to take online screener surveys to see if they should go to testing sites in either county for exams.

Verily said it worked with the federal government to build the online tool to perform risk screening and testing of people at high risk of contracting the coronavirus.

In a press conference on Sunday afternoon, Governor Gavin Newsom said the tool is meant for people with mild symptoms, as well as those at high risk, including seniors. People who use the website will be asked to answer specific questions and then be scored in terms of their likelihood to need testing, Newsom said.

When users enter the website, the first question in the survey is: “Are you currently experiencing severe cough, shortness of breath, fever, or other concerning symptoms?” Answering “yes” to the question appears to end the test, while saying “no” takes the user to the next question.

To take the screener, users are also required to have a Google account. If they don’t have one, they are prompted to create one.

According to Verily, “the tool will triage people who are concerned about their COVID-19 risk into testing sites based on guidance from public health officials and test availability,” Verily said. “People who meet eligibility and requirements for testing will be directed to mobile testing sites based on capacity, where they will complete a nasal swab test. “

Once testing is complete, results will be ready “within a few days.”

Verily said it plans to expand the program, which is currently in its early stages, as more testing sites and kits become available.

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