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Nashville closes last drive-thru COVID-19 testing, vaccination site

The Tennessean (Nashville) logo The Tennessean (Nashville) 7/1/2022 Rachel Wegner, Nashville Tennessean

Nashville's drive-thru COVID-19 testing and vaccination site on Murfreesboro Pike is now closed, officials announced. 

The site at 2491 Murfreesboro Pike closed after its regular hours on June 30. It is the final and longest-running site of its kind in Nashville

The site opened in March 2020 and handled more than 100,000 COVID-19 tests and vaccinations, according to OEM. That includes nearly 14,000 vaccines administered since April 2021. All tests and vaccines were free and did not require proof of residency in Nashville.

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MPHD will continue to offer a variety of pop-up testing and vaccination events. Find more information and a link to a calendar of those events at asafenashville.org. Find more information on COVID-19 testing, vaccines and safety measures at covid.gov.

“Our team is monitoring COVID-19’s presence in the community and remains ready to increase testing and vaccinations if the need arises," Metro Public Health Department Director Dr. Gill Wright said in a news release. 

Gill pointed to widely available COVID-19 tests and vaccines in pharmacies, urgent care facilities and doctor's officers across the city.

"Through these offerings and our Strike Team’s numerous community-based pop-up clinic events, we are confident the community’s current needs for testing and vaccinations will continue to be met," Gill said. 

Overall, Nashville's COVID-19 testing and vaccination sites operated for more than two years, administered more than 385,000 tests and gave 25,000 vaccines, according to Dr. Alex Jahangir. He led the city's COVID-19 task force until recently. 

Jahangir lauded their work as a "feat" and said it would not have been possible without the dedicated people behind the city's partnership with Meharry Medical College; TriStar; Vanderbilt University Medical Center Ascension St. Thomas; Nashville General Hospital, the Nashville Emergency Operations Center; Metro Nashville Public Health; the Tennessee National Guard.

The Murfreesboro Pike site, which is a former Kmart, is operated by Meharry Medical College. It weathered multiple surges of COVID-19 and was part of the nationwide rollout of vaccines. Meharry also operated testing sites on its medical college campus, Nissan Stadium and in midtown Nashville off 28th Avenue North.

Dr. Julie Gray talks with a teammate at a COVID-19 testing site in Nashville on Aug. 11, 2020. © Larry McCormack / The Tennessean Dr. Julie Gray talks with a teammate at a COVID-19 testing site in Nashville on Aug. 11, 2020.

"Over the past two years, Meharry Medical College has been honored to be a part of the fight against COVID-19 in Metro Nashville," said Dr. Julie Gray, who serves as the Associate Dean of Community Based Education at Meharry. "Meharry’s work at the Nashville assessment sites has enabled the college to carry out its mission of service to all Middle Tennesseans — especially at the Kmart site."

Gray said she and her colleagues are encouraged by the recent progress against COVID-19 but urged people to continue to be socially responsible and vigilant. 

Find reporter Rachel Wegner at rawegner@tennessean.com or on Twitter @rachelannwegner.

This article originally appeared on Nashville Tennessean: Nashville closes last drive-thru COVID-19 testing, vaccination site

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