Eli Lilly (LLY 0.69%) is linking up with the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) to rapidly expand and accelerate testing for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus in its home state. In a press release issued on Wednesday, the company said that it will soon begin offering free coronavirus tests to Indiana residents.

Eli Lilly employee conducting research.

Image source: Eli Lilly

Since its founding almost a century and a half ago, Eli Lilly has been based in Indiana's capital city of Indianapolis. The pharmaceutical giant will utilize its specialized research laboratories there to test samples collected by healthcare facilities across the state. 

"Assuming the company can continuously access required diagnostic reagents, this should start to expand the state's ability to conduct testing and receive a timely diagnosis of individuals who suspect they may be carrying the virus," Lilly said in its press release on the matter.

"As Lilly's testing capacity expands, Lilly and ISDH will work together to maximize the impact of broader testing," the company added.

The federal government has come under fire for not being better prepared to test for the coronavirus. As a result, a number of healthcare companies and state and local governments have taken it upon themselves to address the shortage. In its press release, Lilly said its testing plan had the "support" of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Lilly is also working on setting up drive-through testing that would allow it to conduct the activity outside of healthcare facilities. It did not provide details about that, nor did it offer a time frame for when such a testing site might be up and running.

The pharmaceutical company's shares held up quite well on Wednesday, considering the decline of the broader stock market. They essentially traded sideways on the day.