COLUMBIA, S.C. (WSAV) – South Carolina health officials are ramping up efforts to detect COVID-19.
At a press conference Wednesday, officials announced a plan to test 2% of the population in May and June. That’s 110,000 residents each month.
According to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC), its new testing plan will target nursing homes, under-resourced, minority and rural areas.
DHEC also plans to identify additional sites for testing.
The agency’s Director Dr. Joan Duwve says a lack of supplies has contributed, in part, to the state’s limited testing capacity.
Duwve said that with more testing, South Carolina needs “an army of contact tracers” to account for increased testing.
She said the state’s goal is to have 1,000 people for the job, meaning hundreds will need to undergo training.
Contact tracing involves calling or video conferencing with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 to discuss a number of medical questions.