State opening COVID-19 testing across Wisconsin to combat surge of virus

NOW: State opening COVID-19 testing across Wisconsin to combat surge of virus

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MADISON, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Governor Tony Evers on Thursday, Oct. 29, with Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) Secretary-designee Andrea Palm, highlighted the expansion of COVID-19 testing across Wisconsin. This includes 71 new free community testing sites that will now be available in 56 counties and seven tribal nations.

According to a news release, these sites have the capacity to test approximately 48,000 people each week. Increasing access to testing for all individuals continues to be a major pillar of Wisconsin's statewide response plan, and these efforts will help meet this goal.

“Testing is a critically important part of our state’s response to this pandemic, and we want to make it easier for those who need a test to get a test,” said Gov. Evers. “Distance is one barrier that we can do something about, and one of the ways to address this issue is to offer testing in more places.”

Key information about the community testing sites:

  • 71 new community testing sites are opening in October and will be available through December 10.
  • 56 counties will host consistent COVID-19 testing sites.
  • 7 tribal nations will be either hosting or co-hosting community testing sites.
  • 35 testing sites will be available 1-3 days a week in 29 counties or tribal nations.
  • 31 testing sites will be available every other week in 27 counties or tribal nations.
  • 5 new sites will be available once a month in 3 counties.

The new sites are intended to ensure consistent access to testing in all regions of the state. Each of the sites uses COVID Connect, the state’s online testing registration and result system, and each has the capacity to collect 300-400 tests a day.

Community testing sites will be available through Dec. 10 and are open to anyone who lives or works in Wisconsin. 

A list of testing sites across the state is available HERE.

These community testing sites are funded by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Gov. Evers dedicated $500 million in CARES funding to support Wisconsin’s testing efforts. CARES funding is set to expire at the end of December.

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