Apple Adding COVID-19 Test Centers to Maps

Apple Asks Labs to Submit Map Info for COVID-19 Testing Locations

Getting sick in the time of COVID-19 usually leads to a test for the virus, if you can find a place to get one. Apple Maps adding test locations could make it much easier.

Apple Store
 Lifewire / Lance Ulanoff

Update: Apple just added COVID-19 testing sites to Apple Maps for all 50 US states and Puerto Rico, according to TechCrunch. Maps users will now see hospitals, clinics, and healthcare providers along with any dedicated testing sites. The company also updated its Mobility Trends website, which provides anonymized data on how people are moving about during the crisis.

Apple is allowing medical labs to add information to Apple Maps about their ability to test for the COVID-19 virus.

How: Apple launched a registration portal this week. Lab professionals can download a template (actually a CSV file you can open in Excel) and mail the completed form back to Apple.

What will we find: Once these locations start appearing in Apple Maps on your iOS device, it will list things like location, type of health facility (hospital or lab, for example), testing hours, and testing location type (drive through, parking lot, converted lab facility).

Why: Those suffering from COVID-19-like symptoms are still struggling to find testing facilities. Apple's efforts might connect people more quickly with nearby options or show them in stark relief that there are no testing sites near them.

Multi-pronged effort: The Apple Map plan follows Apple announcing a joint effort with Google to develop an opt-in contact tracing system within their mobile operating systems. Apple also recently designed, built, and started shipping face shields to help fill in the gap on PPE equipment for healthcare workers treating COVID-19 parents.

Bottom line: Experts agree that social distancing and testing are keys to beating the COVID-19 pandemic. If healthcare sites participate in Apple's new plan, we may finally have a clear picture of the current state of virus testing in America.

Via: 9to5Mac

Learn More About Apple Maps