State and college officials are banding together to fight the spread of COVID-19. To determine who may have been exposed to the coronavirus, the University Of Arizona's antibody blood tests will be administered to thousands of Arizonans. Once plans are finalized, a majority of the university's 45,000 students and 15,000 employees will also receive antibody testing. 

"Arizona is proud to partner with @uarizona to provide 250,000 #COVID19 antibody tests to health care workers and first responders throughout the state. The first phase of testing begins this week on Thursday, April 30," Governor Doug Ducey posted to his Twitter page. 

The University of Arizona released its COVID-19 Antibody Testing Initiative FAQ with details on the first phase.

The university will be analyzing blood samples from hundreds of thousands of Arizona residents to determine who has been exposed to the novel coronavirus.

Their specific test will detect the presence of antibodies "that attach to the coronavirus that causes COVID-19." 

U of A partnered with the state of Arizona, which is providing $3.5 million in funds to test 250,000 first responders and health care workers in the state. 

The first round of testing will begin in Pima County on April 30, including 3,000 first responders and health care workers.

Separate funding will also be used to test 1,500 members of the general public, including students living on college campuses or living in the county. 

Remaining health care workers and first responders throughout the state will receive antibody testing on May 7.

With separate funding, U of A wants to expand testing to the majority of its 45,000 students and 15,000 employees; however, plans are still being finalized. 

The university stresses that testing is crucial because it "will help us determine who has been exposed to the virus. It is assumed that many people who have been exposed to the virus have never developed symptoms."

Currently, there are 3,445 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Maricopa County alone. 

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