LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — In his Wednesday briefing, Mayor Eric Garcetti announced that testing for the novel coronavirus would be available to all critical workers starting Thursday regardless of whether or not they were experiencing symptoms.

“Starting tomorrow, health care professionals, grocery store workers, first responders and critical government personnel can get a test even if you don’t have symptoms,” Garcetti said. “We wish we could open that up to everybody, but I think we all know that we have firefighters and police officers, doctors, nurses, janitors at hospitals, folks that are in grocery stores and pharmacies that are putting themselves out on the line and we want to make sure that they are healthy.”

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Garcetti said that critical workers should contact their employers starting tomorrow to find out how they can get priority testing.

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The mayor also noted that the the city’s rapid response team has been testing nursing facility residents and staff members as well as health care workers in high-risk situations for COVID-19, whether or not they were showing symptoms, for the past few weeks.

“Over the last two days, the team has provided testing to more than 1,000 [nursing facility] residents and staff, both with and without symptoms to make sure,” he said. “And we’ve contacted dozens more offering free testing services.”

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Those eligible for testing can sign up for an appointment at one of the county’s 34 testing sites on the city’s website.