Delaware plans to conduct 80,000 COVID-19 tests a month

DOVER — Delaware announced Friday it will be significantly expanding its COVID-19 testing to help the state move toward reopening. Gov. John Carney said the plan will see the state working alongside hospitals, doctors and community organizations to conduct 80,000 tests a month.

So far, about 27,000 Delawareans have been tested and had the results come up, with an unknown number awaiting the findings.

Delaware has purchased 200,000 saliva-based tests from Curative, a Los Angeles-based testing company, which are set to begin arriving here today.

The state will prioritize individuals who are symptomatic, have been exposed to confirmed COVID-19 cases, are especially vulnerable and work in certain essential fields. Delaware intends to supply partner organizations like primary care physicians and pharmacies with testing supplies to help reach more people.

“We know that widespread community testing needs to be in place before we can safely reopen our economy,” Gov. Carney said in a statement. “Finding a reliable supply of reliable tests has been a serious challenge, but we’ve put a plan in place that gets us to the starting line. We’ll be able to diagnose symptomatic Delawareans and detect asymptomatic spread through community testing. I want to thank all of our partners who are stepping up for their fellow Delawareans during this crisis.”

The Division of Public Health will develop a list of front-line workers who will receive prioritized testing. It will also work with employers to test workers.

The state on Tuesday announced a plan to test all staff and residents of long-term care facilities in the state. Officials said Friday they intend to continue offering free testing at rotating sites statewide.

“Our partners in this statewide testing effort will help us quickly identify Delawareans who need COVID-19 testing and prevent the spread of the disease,” DPH Director Karyl Rattay said in a statement. “This new testing program is a significant expansion of our current testing efforts, and it’s designed to keep all Delawareans safe and healthy by helping us to understand where and how much viral activity is occurring in our state. Thank you to our partners who are helping us take this important step forward.”

Helpful Coronavirus links

Delaware Division of Health Coronavirus Page
CDC: About the Coronavirus Disease 2019
CDC: What to do if You Are Sick
Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center
AP News Coronavirus Coverage
Reopening Delaware: Resources for Businesses
Delaware Phase 2 guidance

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