COVID-19 testing down 30 percent nationally, increasing in El Paso


EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — As the U.S. reckons with its peak rate of COVID-19 infections, testing for the virus is down about 30 percent.

According to Politico, COVID-19 testing nationwide dropped by more than one-third over the last week. One reason is because of revised criteria by the CDC that gives priority to high-risk patients, medical professionals, and patients already hospitalized. Other reasons include glitches in the country’s testing systems that have been reprioritized in an effort to re-open the economy.

Some commercial labs are not being utilized to their capacity, which suggests demand for tests has peaked among the CDC’s high priority lists.

In El Paso, however, COVID-19 testing access and availability are increasing.

As of April 15, the City of El Paso reported that 969 patients in the region have been tested.

Access to testing has been more accessible to the community throughout the month of April. The MD Medical Group clinic started offering drive-thru tests in the Northeast earlier this month and a testing center in Sunland Park, New Mexico opened last week.

COVID-19 tests in El Paso are conducted by the Department of Public Health Lab and outside labs.

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