By Mugo Odigwe

CHICAGO (CBS) — A new COVID-19 rapid testing site opened to the public this morning on the South Side. It can provide results within 30 minutes.

CBS 2’s Mugo Odigwe explains how it came about.

The testing site is located at Chicago Baptist Institute at 5120 S. King Dr., thanks to a partnership between CVS and local non-profits. The goal is to make sure communities highly affected by COVID-19 have access to testing.

“What makes this unique is the patients don’t need to have a vehicle. We can accept walk up patients, which is different than our store locations,” said CVS district leader Amanda McKee.

People must register in advance and set up an appointment for the rapid testing at Chicago Baptist Institute. Once you’re tested, you’ll be able to leave with results the same day. The site open is Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The goal is to provide 125 tests a day, but they are prepared to expand to 200 a day if needed.

“A vital role at CVS is to make sure that we’re playing a part in the community that we serve, especially now with the pandemic; and so looking at communities of greatest need where there is lack of testing – lack of accessible testing – was important to us when we chose locations, and that’s why we selected this location,” McKee said.

CVS Pharmacies employees will be the ones doing the testing. It’s open to the public and it’s free of charge, though you must meet criteria established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Knowing that we’re impacting a community that needs us … has made it really exciting to put together a team to be here to know that we’re going to have a great impact on people who really need it the most,” McKee said.

The number you should call to pre-register is 844-826-2838. If you have trouble getting through, just keep trying, or book an appointment at a CVS pharmacy online.

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