COVID-19 Unified Command Group Brings Voluntary Testing to Metro Nashville Housing Authority Neighborhoods

Tennessee Dept. of Human Services Will Offer Info at Testing Events on COVID-19 Public Support Programs for Child Care, SNAP
Wednesday, May 13, 2020 | 04:05pm

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee Governor Bill Lee’s Unified Command Group is coordinating with the Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency to provide free, voluntary COVID-19 testing for families and residents at 14 MDHA communities and neighborhoods in Nashville on Thursday and Friday.

“Governor Lee directed the UCG in April to expand our COVID-19 testing efforts to test more Tennesseans,” said Commissioner Lisa Piercey, MD, MBA, FAAP, Tennessee Department of Health. “Collaborating with housing authorities in Tennessee’s metropolitan areas provides the means to get COVID-19 tests to communities whose members are particularly vulnerable to the virus.”

MDHA testing locations on Thur., May 14, open 12 p.m. to 6 p.m., CST (except as noted)

  • Parkway Terrace
  • Edgehill Apartments
  • Vine Hill Apartments
  • Levy Place
  • Neighborhood Housing
  • Cayce Place (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
  • CWA Plaza Apartments (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.)

MDHA testing locations on Friday, May 15, from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m., CST (Except as noted)

  • Andrew Jackson Courts
  • J. Henry Hale Apartments
  • Cheatham Place
  • Cumberland View
  • Historic Preston Taylor
  • Napier Place (10 a.m. to 4p.m.)
  • Sudekum Apartments (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.)

Medics with the Tennessee National Guard at each MDHA neighborhood site will collect nasal swabs from those who voluntarily agree to a COVID-19 test.

Participants should receive their test results within 72 hours, depending on test processing volume at laboratories. Information will be provided to participants at the testing locations on what they can expect after being tested. This information is also available at:

“UCG has tasked the Tennessee National Guard with a humanitarian mission of supporting state and local agencies in their COVID-19 testing efforts,” said Tennessee Adjutant General Jeff Holmes. “Since March, Guard personnel have supported COVID-19 testing at county health departments, ​facilitated drive through testing sites/remote assessment sites across the state, and worked through UCG ​to provide testing at long-term facilities and State correctional facilities. We continue to prioritize UCG’s plans to reduce barriers to COVID-19 testing, especially for vulnerable and minority populations.”

Tennessee Department of Human Services (TDHS) staff will be joining the MDHA testing events on Thursday and Friday to provide residents with information on how to apply for TDHS’s COVID-19 support programs, including:

  • COVID-19 Emergency Cash Assistance, provides two months of cash payments to families who’ve lost a job or are earning half of their earned income due to COVID-19.
  • COVID-19 Essential Employee Child Care Payment Assistance Program, provides payment assistance at licensed child care facilities for essential workers.
  • Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP), supplements monthly food budgets of families with low-income to buy the food they need and allow them to direct more of their available income toward essential living expenses. 
  • Families First, provides temporary assistance for those seeking employment with child care, transportation, educational support, and job training. It has a primary focus on gaining self-sufficiency through employment.

More information on TDHS’s COVID-19 programs is available at

 “TDHS continues to provide resources for families at all steps of their lives. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we have expanded opportunities to support families with resources they need to get through this unprecedented time.” said TDHS Commissioner Danielle W. Barnes.  “Easy access to testing is an essential resource Tennesseans need. By meeting the health and financial needs of families during this time, we are making it possible to continue to build a thriving Tennessee in the future.”

Anyone Tennessean with health concerns, or who has concerns about the health of a family member, can obtain a free COVID-19 test any day of the week, at any county health department. Find testing locations at

Governor Lee formed the UCG on March 23, 2020, bringing together the Tennessee Department of Health, Tennessee Department of Military, and Tennessee Emergency Management Agency to streamline coordination across key Tennessee departments to fight the COVID-19 pandemic in the state.