Cabinet Secretary Azar visits testing site at Charlotte Motor Speedway

Cabinet Secretary Azar visits testing site at Charlotte Motor Speedway

CONCORD, N.C. — A key booster of President Donald Trump’s administration response to the coronavirus and efforts to revive the national economy visited North Carolina.

On Thursday, U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar toured a testing site run at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord.

Officials said one reason for the visit was to check on testing capacity for people who will attend the Republican National Convention in August.

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The Cabinet secretary also met with local health care leaders about efforts to dull the spread of COVID-19 and reopen North Carolina safely.

The convention is expected to bring thousands of people and Azar talked to leaders about how they plan to keep those people safe through COVID-19 screening and testing.

“Part of the protocols might involve large-scale testing associated with that. With that, how can we work together to provide surge supplies or testing capacity around it?,” he said.

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The visit comes the day before a new order by Gov. Roy Cooper takes effect that reopens barbershops and salons and lets restaurants serve sitting patrons again.

State health officials have reported more than 20,000 positive cases of the virus and about 700 related deaths.

Azar said he is still talking to Gov. Roy Cooper about RNC plans and the governor of Wisconsin, where the Democratic National Convention will be held in July.

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