March 16 coronavirus news

By Ben Westcott, Helen Regan, Adam Renton, Meg Wagner and Veronica Rocha, CNN

Updated 10:14 p.m. ET, March 16, 2020
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9:17 p.m. ET, March 15, 2020

Vice President Pence says more than 2,000 labs will have high-speed testing capability by Monday

From CNN's Nicky Robertson and Jason Hoffman

During a White House briefing Sunday, Vice President Mike Pence announced that “more than 2,000 labs” will have high-speed testing capacity by Monday.

Since the declaration of a national state of emergency, Pence said federal public health services have worked with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and "have reached out to all 50 states to create a process that will enable all Americans who need to be tested to go to a community-based testing site outside of usual health care facilities." 

Pence noted these tests will be focused on those "most in need."

Adm. Brett Giroir with the US Public Health Service outlined how new coronavirus testing will be rolled out. He said there would be 1.9 million tests available this week across the 2,000 labs. Giroir also emphasized that the priority would be placed on those most vulnerable.

Giroir added that there wouldn’t be undue stress put on the acute health care system, meaning emergency rooms or urgent care.