Georgia Sees Banner Week for COVID-19 Testing
Monday, May 4th, 2020
Governor Brian P. Kemp applauded the many public health officials, frontline healthcare workers, private sector and university partners who are working around the clock to ramp up COVID-19 testing in Georgia. Between Monday, April 26 and Thursday, April 30, Georgia more than doubled the number of tests reported in the previous week.
"I want to thank our many partners in this fight for their incredible work to increase access to COVID-19 testing across the state," said Governor Kemp. "Thanks to Georgia’s partnership with our university system, the private sector, and local public health officials, we ended April by setting a single day testing record, reporting over 20,000 tests on April 30 alone. This is great progress for our state, but we refuse to rest on our laurels. In the days ahead, we will continue to increase access to coronavirus testing across Georgia."
In March, the State of Georgia announced an unprecedented partnership with the University System of Georgia, Georgia Public Health Laboratory, and Emory University to process over 3,000 samples a day. Since that time, the state has also partnered with companies like CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, and eTrueNorth to launch drive-thru testing sites throughout metro Atlanta and deploy mobile testing units to areas with limited access.
Augusta University has launched a 24/7 screening app available to all Georgians on their smartphones to streamline screening and access to tests for symptomatic Georgians and asymptomatic frontline workers. The university is also helping to alleviate supply chain burdens and reduce Georgia's dependence on vendors and governmental entities for testing supplies by 3-D printing test swabs from the Dental College of Georgia's innovation lab.
Thanks to these efforts and the hard work of many, Georgia closed the month of April reporting a single day record of 20,675 tests reported. Georgia Department of Public Health specimen collections are up 64% in the last week, and the state currently has fifty-nine active designated testing sites. A map of all COVID-19 testing locations can be viewed here.
"We have the capacity, we have the bandwidth, and now we need the patients," said Kemp. "I encourage Georgians who are experiencing symptoms as well as asymptomatic medical workers, critical infrastructure workers, law enforcement, first responders, and residents and staff of long-term care facilities to schedule a screening through the AU Health ExpressCare app and visit one the state's more than fifty active testing sites if necessary. We will continue to work diligently to innovate and increase testing in Georgia, and together, we will win this fight."